In a world where the only news that we get is bad news it is hard to appreciate the good things that happen. Think about it: when last did you hear or read about something good that has happened in our city or our country?
A few months ago Angus Buchan asked South Africans to come to the FNB Stadium in Johannesburg to hold a solemn assembly where we could confess our sins and ask God to bless our nation. The obvious result of this time of humbling ourselves in prayer before the Lord is the rain that has fallen over the last two months.
The Bible often commands us to take stock and give thanks.
There are many Psalms specifically written to help the Israelites reflect on God's provision; to help ordinary Israelites to pause, take time to reflect and to give thanks. Take Psalm 107:1-2 as an example:
"Give thanks to the lord, for he is good!His faithful love endures forever. Has the lord redeemed you? Then speak out! Tell others he has redeemed you from your enemies."
The rest of this psalm is a detailed account of God's provision for the nation of Israel. Take some time to read it for yourself.
This psalm highlights three specific actions that constitutes giving thanks;
- taking time to reflect on the good things He has done and on His faithfulness. We need time in all of the negative to see the good things that God has done and is doing.
- giving thanks. Simply saying "God I thank you for..." Be specific like the psalmist in this psalm.
- telling someone. It is not enough to know it, we need to tell it. I love the way that the NLT puts it: "has the Lord redeemed you? Then speak out tell others..." Something happens inside of us when we tell someone else what God has done for us. It lifts the mood and breaks down the negative. It is a great antidote for depression. For some of us this "telling someone" is the difficult part.
Why not give it a try? Go through the complete process of giving thanks; don't just think about God's goodness, take time, give thanks and tell someone. Feel the joy.
Speaking of Good News...
Congratulations to Kim Mackey and John Lewis on their engagement this past week! We hope that this time of planning and preparation for your future together will be a happy time.
Last Chance Today!