22 I will tell of Your name to my brethren;
In the midst of the assembly I will praise You.
23 You who fear the Lord, praise Him;
All you [r]descendants of Jacob, glorify Him,
And stand in awe of Him, all you [s]descendants of Israel.
24 For He has not despised nor abhorred the affliction of the afflicted;
Nor has He hidden His face from him;
But when he cried to Him for help, He heard.
25 From You comes my praise in the great assembly;
I shall pay my vows before those who fear Him.
26 The [t]afflicted will eat and be satisfied;
Those who seek Him will praise the Lord.
Let your heart live forever!
27 All the ends of the earth will remember and turn to the Lord,
And all the families of the nations will worship before [u]You.
28 For the kingdom is the Lord’s
And He rules over the nations.
29 All the [v]prosperous of the earth will eat and worship,
All those who go down to the dust will bow before Him,
Even he who [w]cannot keep his soul alive.
30 [x]Posterity will serve Him;
It will be told of the Lord to the coming generation.
31 They will come and will declare His righteousness
To a people who will be born, that He has performed it.
It’s fitting that we have a passage on giving God praise right after Thanksgiving weekend. For who else deserves more thanks than God himself? Yet there’s a funny thing about giving thanks to God, which is that He doesn’t need it… So, why in the world do we give God something He doesn’t need?
I think it’s similar to the act of giving itself, since we are “giving thanks”. The reason is kind of simple, we give thanks because it’s good for us. It puts our mind in a different place. It gets us out of the mulligrubs, and puts our focus somewhere besides ourselves. Which is also a funny thing: It’s best for us… if we take our focus off of us.
We do good things for others, we give, and we give thanks because it makes us better people. It makes us more like Jesus, and that’s always the highest priority. Giving thanks reminds us of how great and amazing God is, and it reminds us of what He has given us, before we ever deserved it–we still don’t, and He gave his life as a ransom for ours anyway.
So when the mulligrubs come a lurking, banish them with praise. Give God thanks like David did, and let the world know how truly amazing He is. Because that’s one more side effect, thanksgiving lifts up and encourages others, and is the best reflection of God in our lives to those who don’t know Him yet. We don’t serve a God of mulligrubs, we serve a God who brings us peace and joy and so much more than this world can offer. And that’s something to be thankful for…