I am thankful for the beauty of the beach and the closeness I feel to God when I am in His creation. I am in awe of God’s wonders! Just as much as I am overcome with His creation, I am blown away by His love for me. This thanksgiving I am especially grateful for His love that endures forever! Psalm 136: 1, “Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good. His love endures forever.” “His love endures forever” is found over 40 times in Scripture. This promise can give us comfort in the best of times and the worst of times. His love endures forever because God is love! As a child of God, there is nothing I can do to make God love me more. There is nothing I can do to make Him love me less. His love is deep. His love endures forever! Receive it, believe it and and give thanks to the Lord for He is good! “God’s love is forever ours, as we are forever His!”
Even when life is hard, like 2020, we need to remember and list our blessings. It changes our focus from our challenges to our blessings, from negative to positive, from death to life! God has done amazing things in 2020 - for this world, for his people, and for us in our personal lives. God is incredibly gracious and generous. James 1: 17, "Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows."
Psalm 66: 1-4, "Shout for joy to God, all the earth! Sing the glory of his name; make his praise glorious. Say to God, “How awesome are your deeds! So great is your power that your enemies cringe before you. All the earth bows down to you; they sing praise to you, they sing the praises of your name." These first four verses are full of adoration for God. In the next verse the psalmist shows us what God has done. Psalm 66: 5, "Come and see what God has done, his awesome deeds for mankind!"
In verse six, he begins listing the ways God has helped us. He lists ways God has watched over us in times of trouble. Psalm 66: 6-12, "He turned the sea into dry land, they passed through the waters on foot— come, let us rejoice in him. He rules forever by his power, his eyes watch the nations— let not the rebellious rise up against him. Praise our God, all peoples, let the sound of his praise be heard; he has preserved our lives and kept our feet from slipping. For you, God, tested us; you refined us like silver. You brought us into prison and laid burdens on our backs. You let people ride over our heads; we went through fire and water, but you brought us to a place of abundance." God has not changed. He is still taking care of us - even when we do not realize it. He is still refining us. Nothing we go through goes to waste. He will bring good from the tough times. Romans 8: 28, "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose." I look through the toughest times in my life and I see how God brought so many blessings from it! Sometimes we just have to reflect.
Let's spend time thinking of all the ways God has provided and protected us. Let's think about how he has refined us. Let's think of the blessings that have come from the hardest times in our lives. The psalmist ended Psalm 66 with verse 20, "Praise be to God, who has not rejected my prayer or withheld his love from me!" Another thing we can also be thankful for! Give thanks today!