Psalm 66- “Shout for joy to God, all the earth; sing the glory of His name; give to him glorious praise! Say to God, ‘How awesome are Your deeds! So great is Your power… all the earth worships You’… Come and see what God has done: He is awesome in His deeds toward… man… Who rules by His might forever, Whose eyes keep watch on the nations… Bless our God, … let the sounds of His praise be heard… We went through fire and through water; yet You have brought us out to a place of abundance… Come and hear, all you who fear God, and I will tell you what He has done for my soul. I cried to Him with my mouth, and high praise was on my tongue… Truly God has listened; He has attended to the voice of my prayer. Blessed be God, because He has not rejected my prayer or removed His steadfast love from me!”
“What He has done for my soul…”
Those words penetrated my heart when I read them aloud this morning. Immediately the intense and unconditional love with which He pursued me relentlessly became vivid once again in every corner of my mind. Too often I let the concerns and obligations of this life drown out the most incredible truth I know. But, oh, how refreshing to be reminded of it!
No doubt, the greatest gift He gave my soul was salvation. To offer me something I in no way could ever earn or deserve… simply because He loved me and wanted to have a relationship with me… absolutely amazing! To pay off the incredible debt that I owed, to justify me without cause, and forgive every selfish trait in me… marvelous beyond words!
Still, He didn’t stop there! He is awesome in His deeds toward us! He daily loads us down with benefits and adds no sorrow, no guilt, no baggage to it! Favor, promotion, friends, family, laughter, hugs, blessing upon blessing, simply because He loves us!
Throughout this life we face many obstacles; fear, betrayal, loss, grief, frustration, loneliness… but the moment we cast it all on Him, He takes it away and replaces it with His peace and joy! And still the gifts keep coming! He instills within us this deep, pulsating expectancy that we can’t even fully comprehend, let alone explain. Still, it puts an extra skip in our step and allows us the ability to walk through even the most troubling of times with an assurance that we’ll be more than okay! We went through fire and through water; yet You have brought us OUT to a place of abundance!
And it keeps getting better! He LISTENS to me!! Every cry I’ve muttered and every praise I’ve exclaimed; He’s heard every word. He even listens to the worries and wishes only my heart can make. Can you soak that in for just a second? As much as I loathe having to admit this, I’ll say it. I’ve had to really work on paying attention to people when they speak to me. If the conversation interests me or captures my sympathy, I’m all in. But, if the former isn’t quite happening, my brain will dart off onto some other forlorn path way off in neverland, and I’m left trying to figure out if I should laugh or nod, say “Oh no!,” or respond in some other way. I get so ashamed because I really DO care about people and how they’re feeling, and I can’t understand how I so quickly misplace my attention. I’ve tried to justify it by reminding myself of all that I have going on, but that doesn’t make it acceptable. And when I think of all God is involved in- it humbles me and thrills my heart to know He never loses interest in what I say to Him. (Even the whiny, nothingness that sometimes -oftentimes- escapes my lips!) He offers my soul a 24/7 place of rest and security!
How could I think on all of this (and it’s still such a small fraction of what He has done for me!) and not exalt His name? He has not rejected me or removed His steadfast love from me! God is so good to me! He’s good to you! He loves us! And He is constantly looking for opportunities to exhibit that love. May I never overlook one of them! He puts so much thought into me…
My soul is forever grateful.
And I just had to tell ya!
Prayer: Dear Lord, I just want to thank You for the love You have for me. I want to praise You for all the good things You have done. It’s unfathomable how deep and sincere Your love is for Your children. You love us all like we’re the only one! May I never fail to bless Your name for this wonderful, peaceful life You’ve given to me. Thank You for being a constant source of strength and contentment. You are a good God! Worthy of all our praise! May we never lose our wonder! In Your precious and holy name I pray. Amen.