Psalm 118, Meditation 2

Psalm 118 (NRSV)

By John Grimm

I remember my youth Sunday School teacher, Bill, reminding us that we can give thanks to God each day.  Whether we thank God for something large or small, we can show our appreciation to God.  In this “Song of Victory,” we start by giving thanks to God.  It is a general call for thanksgiving.

As we move through the first four verses of Psalm 118, we see that the call for thanksgiving becomes more specific.  The second group encouraged to give thanks is Israel.  As we ponder what God has brought Israel from, through, and to, we can recognize they know the steadfast love of God does endure! 

The house of Aaron is the next group to be encouraged to give thanks.  Yes, Aaron did lead the Israelites to make the golden calf.  However, God’s steadfast love was given so he and his descendants could know God’s forgiveness.  Yes, even those who lead in the worship of God can give thanks.  For we clergy who lead worship, our worship begins when we too can give thanks to God for his steadfast love.

The last group in our selection today is those who fear the Lord.  This group can contain members of the previous two groups mentioned.  It can also contain those who are now called Christians!  Even our neighbors who do not subscribe to organized religion may be in the group of those who fear the Lord.

Despite our best efforts, Christians can harm people who are seeking faith in God.  When these people have a respect for the Lord, they do not tolerate Christians who have harmed them.  Hopefully, those turned off by organized religion may recognize the steadfast love of the Lord and join Christians in giving thanks to God.

Have we been giving thanks to God every day of our lives?  Do we encourage other people to give thanks to God for his steadfast love?  As long as the earth has seasons, we will know the steadfast love of God!

Lord, you do have steadfast love for us!  You are good to me and everyone else.  Thank you for being in our lives.  May we open our eyes to your steadfast love, even when others have harmed us.  In the name of Jesus Christ, we pray. Amen.

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