Pay attention to the tension in your body. Let go of it and any expectations to do anything, but God’s will today. Prepare yourself to hear God’s word.
Psalm 66:8-20 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
Bless our God, O peoples,
let the sound of his praise be heard,
who has kept us among the living,
and has not let our feet slip.
For you, O God, have tested us;
you have tried us as silver is tried.
You brought us into the net;
you laid burdens on our backs;
you let people ride over our heads;
we went through fire and through water;
yet you have brought us out to a spacious place.
I will come into your house with burnt offerings;
I will pay you my vows,
those that my lips uttered
and my mouth promised when I was in trouble.
I will offer to you burnt offerings of fatlings,
with the smoke of the sacrifice of rams;
I will make an offering of bulls and goats. Selah
Come and hear, all you who fear God,
and I will tell what he has done for me.
I cried aloud to him,
and he was extolled with my tongue.
If I had cherished iniquity in my heart,
the Lord would not have listened.
But truly God has listened;
he has given heed to the words of my prayer.
Blessed be God,
because he has not rejected my prayer
or removed his steadfast love from me.
Many have equated Psalm 66:8-20 with the hymn “I Love To Tell The Story”. The choir at Woodlawn Elizabeth Baptist church, in Woodlawn, Tennessee, where I was raised, frequently sang that hymn. All ages enjoyed it, and enthusiastically so.
We receive all the reasons in/of the world for which to be thankful, even before Psalm 66. Therefore, by the time we move into this chapter, we are moved to recognize (CHRISTian believers) to acknowledge the ‘awesome-ness’ of our God.
We get to re-energize, revive, reconcile, possibly resuscitate our relationship with the Lord by exhorting Him for all He has done, provided, and increased for our good. Then, I am personally moved by the reminders of all God has done for me. Sometimes, I need to thump my own head and have more ‘ah-ha’ moments to shake the spirit of entitlement, ungratefulness, and neglect of some things that should warrant greater priority. The Word makes this so, so simple. I have more than enough printed manna by which to magnify my witness, evangelistic efforts on this side of the United States, and include in all I take before God’s people.
Let us all beef up our ‘story-telling’ to better glorify God and amplify His sovereignty to all His human creations, both believers and non-believers, both the churched and unchurched, and certainly the disenfranchised for any. and all, reasons.
Lord God, mighty God, my ONLY GOD…thank you for all you have done. Thank you for plenty of reasons to exhort you before all, and provide divinely orchestrated evidence of your power, purpose, and plan. May we tell YOUR stories, as we walk this narrow path enthusiastically and correctly, that we may be more useful in kingdom-building. In Jesus’ name, amen.
Go with God!