Rejoice, Pray, Give Thanks.

PSALM 126:3 The Lord has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy.

I was reading this Psalm the other day and as I happened upon it I stopped and read it again. I re-read it a few times more. And then I changed it to make it more personal. I changed it to:

The Lord has done great things for ME, and I am filled with joy. 

That made a big difference, because now the verse was personal. I was immediately swept away with the thoughts of all the great things God has done for me. The open doors, the connections, the financial provision, the new opportunities, the growth, the accomplishments, and most importantly my salvation. All of those were great things that God has done for me.

Jesus’ salvation on the cross was the greatest thing God could have done for us. Then it occurred to me that this Psalm was written before Jesus died on the cross. This Psalm was likely written during the Davidic Rule. But because God is unchanging and He is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow, not only has He done great things for us(me), but that means He is continually doing great things for us.

God is constant, so He is constantly doing great things for us. Thereby, we should constantly be filled with joy, but sometimes we aren’t. So I asked God what the ingredients for joy were and He said to me Praise and Thanksgiving. I was reminded of Paul writing and saying

Rejoice Always, Pray Unceasingly, and Give Thanks in all circumstances….  1 These 5:16-18. 

Another portion of a verse God had been teaching me about lately.

I understand joy might be a little hard to muster up in certain situations, but our default reaction to a lot of the life happening around us isn’t always Rejoice, Pray, Give thanks is it? I know for me it wasn’t. Until I started repeating this little mantra to myself over and over; Rejoice, Pray, Give thanks everyday, Rejoice, Pray, Give thanks everyday , Rejoice, Pray, Give thanks everyday…….it helped to really cement that mindset in me. Then it became easier to have a peaceful reaction to life circumstances. When you’re praising and thanking God for all that He has done for you you are in a much better state emotionally to be filled with joy. So I just want to encourage you all to reflect on all the great things God has done for you, and then begin by praising Him and thanking Him.

Not sure what to be thankful for? For starters thank God your alive and breathing. Your family, or friends, loved ones. Perhaps a job, or a vacation, or your own salvation. If you’re really desperate start thanking him for gravity, and for your eyesight (cause you wouldn’t be reading this otherwise) and for your pinky toes. Start somewhere!

Oh, and THANKS for reading. 🙂

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