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Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good.
His love endures forever.
Give thanks to the God of gods.
His love endures forever.

Psalm 136:1-2

 

We have within us an innate sense of desiring all that is good – of longing for what is true and pure and good, and rejecting all we see that is evil. We have within us an innate sense that loving is better than hating – longing for relationships that are positive and uplifting, rather than destructive and painful.

God, who is the God of gods, is behind all of these longings and desires – this sense that there is “good” and “bad”, “right “ and “wrong”.

Sometimes when life seems especially difficult, and the reality of the evil that exists in this world seems particularly intense, it can be hard to give thanks to the Lord. We can fall so easily into doubt and unfaithfulness to God.

We can, however, take time out to remember that all that we know to be noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, and praiseworthy only exist because God himself is good. We struggle with evil and ugliness in ourselves and in this world because there is such a thing as “good” – and that is God himself.

Not only is God good, he loves us with a love that endures forever. Whatever we struggle with will not last forever – only the eternal love of God.

We can always be thankful to God for is who he is, and what he is like. Thankful that his love is steadfast and faithful towards us, even when we are unfaithful towards him.

When life is going well for us, it is always good to stop and remember to worship God himself, and not merely the things he gives us in this world.

When life is difficult, it is always good to stop and remember that there is so much more than the evil and brokenness of this world and its people – there is God himself, who is all that we long for, the essence of goodness, and his enduring eternal love.

Give thanks to the Lord!

 

Grow Deeper

Read the whole of Psalm 136.

As you read through the psalmist’s journey through Israel’s story, stop and pause at each verse – in each one the psalmist sees reason to praise God and an example of his faithfulness to his people. The story of God’s people is full of such accounts.

What things in your own story can you point to that bear testimony to God’s faithfulness towards you?

What is the ultimate example of God’s faithfulness towards his unfaithful people?

Why not have a go at writing your own psalm to God’s goodness and faithfulness as shown in your own life?

 

Prayer

Dear Heavenly Father,

Please forgive me that my love for you and others is so fickle, so easily tainted.

Thank you for showing me your good and pure love in the death and resurrection of Jesus, to bring me forgiveness for my unfaithfulness towards you. Thank you that you are faithful towards me eternally and unconditionally, even when I am unfaithful towards you.

Thank you for revealing yourself in the history of Israel, and in my own history.

Please help me to be more faithful towards you. Please use me as your instrument in this world to point others to your goodness and faithful enduring eternal love.

As I stop now to consider the length and breadth and depth of your mighty love, please help me to be changed by it today by the work of your Spirit in my heart

In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

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