March 13: Gratitude
Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ – Ephesians 5:20
We are here admonished to give thanks for all things. We know we should give thanks for our daily provisions and for the mercy of God in saving us; but sometimes we don’t take the time or make the effort to truly thank Him, or to consider all the things for which we should be grateful…
Sing unto the LORD with thanksgiving; sing praise...unto our God – Psalm 147:7
In this verse we see at least three crucial elements to godly gratitude.
First, thanksgiving above all involves communication with God. Twice the directive is given: “sing to the Lord” and “sing to God.” We too often talk about God without communing with God from our hearts. The God who gives us richly all things to enjoy, the God from whom every good gift comes, wants to see our appropriate response of gratitude directed to him as the Giver.
Second, biblical thanksgiving is worship. There is a clear parallel in this verse between singing "with thanksgiving" and singing with "praise". Thanksgiving is praising God; it is acknowledging him as the source of all blessing. And so true thanksgiving is only found where people are worshiping the one, true God. Everything else is just idolatry.
And finally, biblical thanksgiving eventually also becomes public exhortation. Because the one true God is worthy of worship and thanksgiving from all his Creation, proper thanksgiving is not only worship directed to God, but it is also an exhortation for every one else to join you. True thanksgiving is not only worship, it is evangelism. It is the public declaration of the worthiness of God to receive worship.
May you be engaged in this godly gratitude today. Expressing to God your thanksgiving, worshiping God because he deserves it, and exhorting others to join you.
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