1I will give thanks to the LORD with my whole heart;
I will recount all of your wonderful deeds.
2I will be glad and exult in you;
I will sing praise to your name, O Most High.
“I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart” – God has done great things for David and he recounts them in this Psalm and thus we are able to understand why it is that he can begin this Psalm by calling upon all to thank the Lord.
But we would be wrong to conclude from this that we only thank God when things have gone our way or when God has come along and worked things out in a manner that we could not have envisioned. We are to be thankful in all things and at all times.
That being said, it is true for the Christian in all things spiritual that God has indeed accomplished a great victory over our enemies. And it is true that He has done great things for us in all the other areas of our lives as well.
We do well to remember that there are Christians in parts of the world where hunger and disease and persecution and other equally terrifying things, are all a part of the Christian’s experience and they can still sing this Psalm because even for them, it is true. Giving thanks for real gifts from God while in the midst of trouble, is a tonic to the soul. It lifts the heart and causes one to have hope for his present crisis.
This is not psychological maneuverings to make someone feel better. It is not something Christians make up to give themselves hope. God keeps His promises. He has promised us tribulation and He says “Be thankful always”. The Christian who can do this is a demonstration of the power of God at work in all His children, no matter what they are going through.
And finally, none of this means that we like trouble. We do not enjoy hardship. We do not want to suffer. We do not fail to work for creature comforts. We just love God more than all those things, so that we can be thankful even when we don’t always get them.
Give thanks today, for it will please God, do you good and enable you to carry on in the midst of your difficulties.