Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Devotional 133 - Thank You, God

"Dear God, Thank you for the baby brother but what I prayed for was a puppy.    Joyce"

"Dear God, please change the taste of asparagus. It is grass. Thanks. Sarah"

"Dear God, Thanks for loving the whole world. I have four people in my house and I can never do it. Neil"

Psalm 107: 1 "Oh give thanks to the LORD, for He is good, for His steadfast love endures forever!"

I like waking up when it is still dark. I like the crisp air, even cold air when I open the door and step outside and take a deep breath. Some early mornings the moon still lights my way and other mornings are covered with gray clouds.

In the days leading up to Christmas this is my moment to pause with God and be thankful. Thankful for what? That all my prayers are answered the way I want? Thankful that I have health? Thankful that my family loves each other? Thankful that I am not alone?

 Yes, these are good things. But like the children above, if God doesn't answer my prayer, if I am surrounded by disease and turmoil, what am I to be thankful for?  Let me give you three reasons.

1. Psalm 118:1 "Oh give thanks to the LORD, for He is good..."  We live with a good God. He is not moody like we are. We never, ever have to fear He will make a mean or vindictive decision in regards to us or the world. He is good and whatever He does is good.

2. Psalm 7:17 "I will give to the LORD the thanks due to His righteousness..."  "God is always consistently “Godly.”  God is not measured or defined by the standard of righteousness; God sets the standard of righteousness"... (Bob Deffinbaugh). He always does what is right. He can be trusted to make perfectly holy, just, right decisions for us and the world. As wars and rumors of wars occur we can be assured that He is working out of His righteousness even in this.

3. Psalm 107:21 "Let them thank the LORD for His steadfast love..." A love that can never be lost is the love we have from the LORD. God's love for you and me does not depend on how good we are at loving others. We fail everyday at being like Jesus and yet His steadfast love remains. Isn't this something to be thankful for? Christmas love is a demonstration of how far God will go to redeem His people.   We should thank Him everyday for this marvelous, unchanging love.

"The way out of despair and loneliness is to give God thanks." Jonathan Bernis