"I count myself one of the number of those who write as they learn and learn as they write." ~St. Augustine

Sunday, April 17, 2016

A Psalm of Thankgiving

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I heard a beautiful sermon this morning on gratitude.  Psalm 136, in it's entirety, was read out from the front with the congregation following along and repeating the phrase "His love endures forever" after each line.  A call and response:
1 Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good.
His love endures forever.
2 Give thanks to the God of gods.
His love endures forever.
3 Give thanks to the Lord of lords:
His love endures forever...
...
It was a very moving moment, with my eyes closed, as I listened to the testimony of what God had done for the Israelites and we all spoke out the truth of His enduring love.

The preacher said that "Biblical gratitude is based on history---on grounded facts and experience. Biblical thankfulness and gratitude is 'looking back' at what God has done and who He is."

My instinct in that very moment was to jump up and speak out (shout!) my own praise and thankfulness.  So, instead, I will use my voice here and write my own Psalm...

here I go, off the cuff---

Psalm one-thirty-six(b)
a psalm of Stephanie

1  Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good,
His love endures forever.
2  Give praise to the Almighty God, who created the world and all the beauty we see,
His love endures forever.
3  Give thanks to my God, who sent His Son to save and deliver His people from darkness,
His love endures forever.
4  to Him that sent His Spirit to dwell in us and to lead us into all truth,
His love endures forever.
5  to Him that provides for our every need,
His love endures forever.
6  who feeds us and clothes us and comforts us when we are sad,
His love endures forever.
7 Give thanks to the God of gods, the Lord of lords,
His love endures forever.
8 He knows all things and His wisdom is pure and holy,
His love endures forever.
9 He has given us eyes to see, ears to hear and tongues to taste.
His love endures forever.
10  for yellow, red, blue and green; laughing and bird song; chocolate and peanut butter
His love endures forever.
11  Give praise to our God, whose heart is close and whose hand is mighty,
His love endures forever.
12  For finding me in that dark place and saving my sad and angry soul,
His love endures forever.
13  For speaking love over me and sending me words of truth,
His love endures forever.
14  and bringing me a man to walk through life and love me well,
His love endures forever.
15 to Him that led us overseas and taught us many things,
His love endures forever.
16 Give thanks to my God, who gifted me with miracle-babies,
His love endures forever.
17 and delivered and healed me from debilitating illness,
His love endures forever.
18 and destroyed the shaking one and rescued me from oppression.
His love endures forever.
19 He remembers me in my humble state.
His love endures forever.
20 And walks with me daily with the invitation of more of His Spirit,
His love endures forever.
21 and feeds me with His word,
His love endures forever.
22 Give thanks to the God of Stephanie, who allows long nights of insomnia,
His love endures forever.
23  and speaks of His wisdom.
He is completing His work in her, and teaching her to trust,
His love endures forever.
24 He has an inheritance for her that will not spoil,
 and is calling her forward for more,
His love endures forever.
25  He deeply loves all the people she sees and knows,
He hears and cares and sees,
His love endures forever.
26  and those she has never met,
His love is for the whole world---the nations
His love endures forever.
27  Give thanks to the God of heaven,
His love endures forever.

I wonder if this wouldn't be a fabulous weekly or monthly practice.  I might give-it-a-go!  Write a psalm... and remember all He has done and especially, essentially, the truth that His love endures forever!  

If you write your own Psalm and want to share... send it along!   I would love to rejoice in your testimony, too!


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