St. John’s University, Collegivelle, MN, 56231 2006
Tuesday, June 30
By Lynn Teel
A Psalm of David – Psalm 138
1 Thank you! Everything in me says “Thank you!” Angels listen as I sing my thanks.
2 I kneel in worship facing your holy temple and say it again: “Thank you!” Thank you for your love, thank you for your faithfulness; Most holy is your name, most holy is your Word.
3 The moment I called out, you stepped in; you made my life large with strength.
4 When they hear what you have to say, God, all earth’s kings will say “Thank you.”
5 They’ll sing of what you’ve done: “How great the glory of God!”
6 And here’s why: God, high above, sees far below; no matter the distance, he knows everything about us.
7 When I walk into the thick of trouble, keep me alive in the angry turmoil. With one hand strike my foes. With your other hand save me.
8 Finish what you started in me, God. Your love is eternal – don’t quit on me now.
I remember when I was a young teenage girl full of spit and vinegar and a tomboy at heart. As one of four children, I wasn’t always the apple of my father’s eye or the bright spot in the lives of my other siblings. I loved horses, but who owns a horse in Richardson, TX that lives in a middle-class family neighborhood? But, one day my father gave me a horse! Can you imagine the surprise and gratitude and thankfulness that I expressed to my father?
When I read verse one this experience is what I think about as I relate to this verse. I can hear the words “thank you” coming from every fiber of David’s soul. And, the “thank you” is so loud and strong that even the Angels listen. In my life I have found that when I express such gratitude and thanks to God that I am filled with the strength of God which is far beyond the strength in me without Him.
I think all of us would agree that our world (in the big world sense) and our world (in the personal smaller world sense) has been challenged and shocked to its core. I read, that 2020 needs a time-out and a do-over. I am prone to some level of fear and worry, but when I express my gratitude and thanks to God I find peace knowing that He sees and has a hand in both the large and the small.
I am currently reading a book titled “My Boy, Ben: A Story of Love, Loss and Grace” written by David Wheaton. It is a true story of Wheaton’s close relationship with his yellow Lab named Ben. If you love dogs as I do and don’t mind shedding a few tears; then, I encourage you to read it. The book isn’t just a dog story, but a story about God, as well. Wheaton, and as today’s verses tell us, says that God see from afar into the infinitesimal and that God is always there to give us the “big” graces and the “infinitesimal” graces according to His time. When we are right with God, how can we not shout as David did “Thank you! Everything in me says “Thank you!”
We have much to fear and much to cause concern in our lives. And, there is much to cause us to rethink and recalibrate how we treat our fellow man in the days ahead. But, Psalm 138 tells me that I need to hold on to gratitude for all the big and small that God does for me and for us. With a clearer head and heart, I can more easily walk with the assurance that God is with me and will finish what He started in me. After all, I am still a work in progress.
A Time of Reflection
Physicians advise us to stop, pause, and take a deep breath. Are you doing so? Are you finding peace within the turmoil? Are you saying “thank you” for all of the big and small graces given to you by our Lord and Savior?
If not, why not?
A Prayer for our Souls
While I do not know the author of this prayer, I do find that it aligns with the spirit of Psalm 138 and ask that you join me in the reading of these words.
Dear Father God, I come before You with a grateful heart for the many blessing that You bestow on us day by day, and praise You that Your mercies are new every morning and You have provided for all our needs, and more besides. You are a great and generous God.
You are so good to all Your creation and have faithfully supplied all our needs, according to Your riches and grace, just as You have promised.
I love that hymn where it says, “count your blessings, see what God has done,” and Father, I do count the many blessings that come from You day by day. Please forgive me for the times when I take for granted the many gifts and graces that come from You. I could not draw another breath unless You give me the strength, and yet moment by moment, I am being kept in Your love and sustained by Your grace. Praise Your glorious name, for ever and ever,