Week 4, Day 1: What Thanksgiving Is

Grateful, Not Grumbling

“Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless his holy name! Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits, who forgives all your iniquity, who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy, who satisfies you with good so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.”
Psalm 103:1-5

Remember to thank God for every happy gift he gives you.

I never have to work hard to remember the disappointments in my life. Frustrations pop in my head each morning, demanding that I use energy to review them and vent over them. And without fail, when I grant them my attention, my heart turns to grumbling and complaining. What a way to start the day!

Perhaps King David faced this same dilemma in his own life. He had so many disappointments for his soul to replay over and over in his heart. Disappointment with King Saul who kept trying to kill him in spite of David’s loyalty. Disappointment with himself for giving himself to terrible sin. Disappointment with his son Amnon for abusing his daughter. Disappointment with his son Absalom who killed Amnon and led a revolt against his own father. So many, many disappointments that pressed against his soul!

Instead of nurturing these complaints into a spirit of grumbling, David spoke to his own soul. He said, “Soul, bless the LORD! He is so very good to you. Do not forget any of God’s benefits!” How I need to command my soul instead of letting circumstances dictate the posture of my heart! God provides so many good gifts to me and it is tragic when I do not take time to linger over his goodness. My soul need not be grumpy or distressed by my losses. If I command my soul to take some time to list all of God’s blessings to me, his joy will awaken my soul to hope.

Friend, will you take 10 minutes this day to begin a list of the many ways that God has blessed your life? Think of the material blessings. Think of the relational blessings. Think of the financial blessings. Think of the physical blessings. Think most of all of the spiritual blessings. God is a good, good Father! We are so loved by him. Speak to your soul and command it, “Soul, do not wallow in your sorrows. Bless the Lord! Let all that I am praise the Lord!”

Application Questions

  • What spiritual blessings bring you joy today?
  • What relational blessings bring you joy today?
  • What physical blessings bring you joy today?

Memory Verse:

“I will bless the Lord at all times; his praise shall continually be in my mouth.” Psalm 34:1