31 Days Of Thanks Posted On January 1, 2014

January, according to many US calendars, is National Thank You month. This of course, is easily transferable everywhere, so perhaps it should be Global Thank You Month. In order to make the best use of this celebration of gratitude, let’s begin by seeing what Scripture says about thankfulness.

One place to start is Psalm 136, which begins and ends with the words, Oh, Give Thanks” (vv. 1,26). Again and again in this chapter we are reminded of a single, overriding reason to bestow our gratitude on our great God: His mercy endures forever”. We could spend the whole month learning about gratitude from Psalm 136.

The Psalmist reminds us of God’s “great wonders” (v.4). He tells us of God’s creative work brought on by His wisdom (v.5). He moves on to rehearse the great exodus of His people (vv. 10-22). As we think through these pictures of creation and deliverance found in Psalm 136, we can easily find something to thank God for every day of this Thank You Month.

What better way to start off a new year than to concentrate on conveying gratitude to our Lord!

Oh, give thanks to the Lord, For he is good! For His mercy endures forever.(v.1)   Dave Branon

 How good it is to thank the Lord,

And praise to Thee, Most High accord,

To show Thy love with morning light,

And tell Thy faithfulness each night!      Psalter

 

 

 

 

 



Do Not Lean on Your Own Understanding

Read part 1 first, Trust In The Lord.

Proverbs 3:5-6
Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.

 

Don't Lean on Your Understanding

The verse involves a positive–something you must do. But it also involves a negative–something you must not do. Don't lean on your own understanding. Basically, the verse is telling us that we ought not to be self-reliant. We cannot pursue a course of action, a financial decision, a business move, a relationship, or an educational choice, simply based on our own understanding. It must be founded in our trust in God.

Self-reliance is such a deceptive trap. We begin to pride ourselves in something–our savvy, our looks, our intellect, our spirituality, our family, whatever. And when we do, it takes away our trust in the Lord. It has become trust in self. The result is a dangerous compromise that will lead to destruction.

 

Instead, Acknowledge God. In Everything.

The antidote to this self-reliance is found in the first command of the verse. “Trust in the Lord with all your heart.” Which is developed in the next verse: “In all your ways acknowledge him.” The word “acknowledge” isn't merely a polite tip of the hat to the Man Upstairs, or a few words of grace over your meal, or even perfunctory attendance at church to let Him know we're still cool with what He's doing. It's way more. It's allowing Him access, control, command, and involvement in all your ways.

What's the result of this? Will God ruin your life? Will he be a Sovereign Killjoy? Will He rob you of fun? The verse ends on a promise. What is it?

 

He will make your paths straight.

The promise is put in the form of a metaphor. What does it mean to have straight paths? Several things. First, paths lead toward an end–a destination, a goal. Thus, trusting God wholeheartedly in every area of life gives your life a sense of purpose and priority. Second, it indicates that there will be a clear understanding of where you are going and what you are doing. It makes daily decision-making an easier and less painful task. You realize you are trusting Him. He, in turn, is making your paths straight. Thus, the way ahead is more apparent. Third, “straight paths” suggests moral purity. It suggests a life that has less of sinful compromise and more of wholesome attitudes, actions, and behavior.

That's the kind of life that God promises. It's the kind of life that you can have. It begins with trust. It involves acknowledging God in every way.