Week 4, Day 3: What Thanksgiving Looks Like

The Thanksgiving of the Redeemed on Display

“So all Israel brought up the ark of the covenant of the Lord with shouting, to the sound of the horn, trumpets, and cymbals, and made loud music on harps and lyres.”
1 Chronicles 15:28

Exuberant displays of gratitude flow from hearts that are thankful for God’s presence and redemption.

The Ark of the Covenant (a physical manifestation of the presence and glory of God among Israel) had been captured by the Philistines and absent from Jerusalem for many years. Now it was returning. At the front of the grand procession, the king of Israel, dressed in the garb of a common Levitical priest, danced and celebrated before the Lord with all his might.

Three months earlier, David had witnessed the righteous judgment of the Lord break out against a disrespectful, disobedient attempt to haul the sacred ark on an ox-cart. Now grateful for the Lord’s rich forgiveness and passionate for the public display of God’s great glory, King David cast off stifling dignity, jumping and whirling in the air in a pure act of joyful thanksgiving. But not everyone looking on that day shared in the king’s jubilation — Michal, the daughter of Saul and wife of King David, was not pleased.

As we obey the Word of the Lord and experience his grace, displays of thanksgiving are a supernatural result. Sometimes, these expressions are loud, that all may hear. They may require a lot of resources and a lot of energy, like celebration and dancing. But in the presence of the Lord Jesus, self-conscious caution may be thrown to the wind, especially when considering him “who redeems your life from the pit; who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy, who satisfies you with good.”

Some may be uncomfortable with such undignified displays, but we press on undeterred, and pray that their eyes may be opened to comprehend our majestic God, that one day they may join the thankful song of the redeemed.

Application Questions

  • What does your thanksgiving look like? Is it evident to others? Is it ever loud, exuberant, or costly? Does it flow from an obedient heart that is grateful for the grace of God through Jesus?
  • Are there any barriers of disobedience, pride, or self-consciousness that are standing in the way of your exuberant thanksgiving?
  • Has the Lord brought to mind any instances of your having a critical spirit toward another for their expression of thanksgiving? If so, confess it to the Lord and enjoy his forgiveness today!

Memory Verse:

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