This past Sunday I was at the church I regularly attend in England. We were having a lovely time of singing and worshipping. At one point, several people shared testimonies of things Father had recently taught them.
One lady told us that earlier in the week she had an opportunity to “go the extra mile” for another woman at work. She did this joyfully but when the recipient barely said a “thank you,” she admitted that she became “really peeved.” She had always been taught to say a word of thanks when someone did a kindness, she told us. The woman didn’t seem appreciative at all for the kindness that had been done for her.
The lady shared further that she had been contemplating this unthankful woman with great irritation in her thoughts, when something startling occurred to her; was she sometimes an unthankful lady? When it came to things our Heavenly Father did for her everyday, did she remember to say “thank you” or did she just go along her way without giving the matter any further thought.
Her words struck a chord with all of us that morning. God blesses us every day. He provides for our needs, He guides us, He causes trees and flowers to grow for our enjoyment, He protects us when we don’t even know we’re being protected, He gives us His strength and inner peace, He gives us wisdom and points the right way to go when we need it. The list of God’s blessings in our lives goes on and on.
Remembering to say thank you to our heavenly Father will bless Him with pleasure in the show of our love for Him but it will bless us too. Psalm 22:3 tells us that “God inhabits the praises of His people.” There is great joy and also power in giving thanks and praise to God. I’m thinking of Jehoshaphat in the Old Testament.
Jehoshaphat led his small army against one much greater in size and won. What was his battle plan? He led his people to, first, be thankful to God and praise Him. Then, instead of putting his greatest warriors in the front lines, he placed praise singers. They sang the following over and over: “Give thanks to the Lord; His faithful love endures forever.” II Chronicles 20:18-27
Remembering to simply say “thank you” to Father every day is like a key that opens our hearts, making it possible to receive God’s own strength and joy. When that happens, then like Jehoshaphat, we too can win any battle no matter how huge it may be.
“I will praise you, Lord, with all my heart; I will tell of all the marvelous things you have done. I will be filled with joy because of you. I will sing praises to your name, Oh Most High.” Psalm 9:1-2