Psalm 66:8-15 (ESV)

Bless our God, O peoples;

let the sound of his praise be heard,

[9] who has kept our soul among the living

and has not let our feet slip.

[10] For you, O God, have tested us;

you have tried us as silver is tried.

[11] You brought us into the net;

you laid a crushing burden on our backs;

[12] you let men ride over our heads;

we went through fire and through water;

yet you have brought us out to a place of abundance.

[13] I will come into your house with burnt offerings;

I will perform my vows to you,

[14] that which my lips uttered

and my mouth promised when I was in trouble.

[15] I will offer to you burnt offerings of fattened animals,

with the smoke of the sacrifice of rams;

I will make an offering of bulls and goats. Selah

[16] Come and hear, all you who fear God,

and I will tell what he has done for my soul.

The Psalmist praises God, in verse 8&9 for the fact that God has not let his feet slip and has kept his soul among the living. Beginning in verse 10 he tells us that God has tested the people, tried them in a fire like silver is tested, captured them in a net, and allowed them to be taken captive by their enemies.

Then in verse 16 he says that he will tell what God has done for his soul. God has done some difficult things in the Psalmists life but it was all for the good of his soul. This is marvelous.

The hardships done to the body, not only did not negatively effect the health of the soul, they were part of what caused the soul to be healthy. We are so prone to complain about the trials of life and wonder if God has forgotten us. We rarely complain when things are going well and the soul begins to grow lazy and unspiritual. We should rather a healthy soul than comfort physically and we should want the health of the soul even if it comes at the cost of hardship in life.

This is a test of our priorities. Do we really value a healthy spiritual life more than a trouble free physical and emotional life? When we have been through the hardships that God brings us into will we praise God for the good it has done for us? We should. He knows what He is doing and whatever He is doing is for our good.

We do not know enough to complain and conclude that God has done us ill by not allowing us to escape trouble. This is a matter of faith. God has said that he will work out all things for our good. It includes this thing, whatever it is. This is difficult to say. None of us know what a day may bring. It sounds like empty bravado to claim that we know that all things God brings us into are for our good. But it is not bravado. It is faith. And faith needs to confirm the truth in good times so that it will remain strong in the bad.

May God grant us the faith to praise him for healthy souls even when they have grown healthy because of the many hardships that all of God’s children are called to travel through.