"O, give thanks unto the Lord: for He is good; for his mercy endureth forever." Psalm 136:1
I will bless the Lord at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth." Psalm 34:1
As we enter into the national tradition of celebrating Thanksgiving, I want to remind you, first of all, that every day is a day of Thanksgiving. God is just so awesome! Truly, I can empathize with whoever initiated the phrase, "If I had 10,000 tongues, I just couldn't praise Him enough." God's been just that good. He's been far better to me than I could ever be to myself.
The purpose of this column is simple: I just want to encourage you: that's what I do; that's who I am. And, like David, I've often found myself in situations wherein I had to encourage myself. I've found that one of the best ways to do so is to take a little time to reflect on the goodness of the Lord. Yes, I know that situations occur. I understand firsthand how children can appear as though they've completely lost their minds in acting as if they don't have one ounce of the home training you know you've instilled in them. I understand how husbands can make you wonder who in the world they really are. I understand how jobs, clients, co-workers and supervisors can frustrate us to no end. I understand how enemies and haters can work our very last nerve and almost cause us to forget we are saved. I understand how bills can get so out of hand that you just want to holler. I understand how every time you think you've taken one step forward it really seems like you've been snatched three steps backward. I understand what the saints of old meant when they said, "If it ain't one thing, it's another." Believe me. I really do understand.
But I also understand that the God I serve is bigger than any circumstance, any frustration, any giant, or any obstacle that could ever come my way. As a matter of fact, He's so awesome that I can't help but give Him His props. In the midst of adversity, He gives me hope. In the midst of confusion, He gives me peace. In the midst of tears, He gives me joy. In the midst of sorrow, He gives me comfort. No matter the situation, God is able to work things out in my favor.
For those who may have never experienced any of these acts of help from the Lord, allow me to encourage you to reach out a little further. The Word of God tells us in James 4:8 that we can draw nigh unto God and He will, indeed, draw nigh unto us. Well, why draw nigh unto Him when we are feeling, as the young people would say, some kind of way? That's the time to go to Him! His strength is made perfect in our weakness! (2 Corinthians 12:9). He is near to those who are of a broken hearted, and He saves those who have a contrite spirit (Psalm 34:18).
No matter where you find yourself in life, you should never be without a praise in your spirit. Let us pray. Kind Heavenly Father, while we realize that there are so many things we could ask you for, we pause right now just to give you praise. We realize that you see all, you hear all, you know all and you are everywhere at the same time. So the things that concern us are of no surprise to you. We thank you, in advance, for already working things out in our favor. Thank you, Lord for what you've done; for what you're doing and for what you shall yet do. Most of all, dear sweet Jesus, we thank you just for being who you are. From this day forward, help us never forget to tell you thank you; for you are truly worthy of our praise. We love you and we bless your holy name. In Jesus' name we pray. Amen.