Start with Posture of Silence and Solitude (2 minutes)
Read Scripture: Psalm 147:1-20
Praise the Lord.
How good it is to sing praises to our God,
how pleasant and fitting to praise him!
The Lord builds up Jerusalem;
he gathers the exiles of Israel.
He heals the brokenhearted
and binds up their wounds.
He determines the number of the stars
and calls them each by name.
Great is our Lord and mighty in power;
his understanding has no limit.
The Lord sustains the humble
but casts the wicked to the ground.
Sing to the Lord with grateful praise;
make music to our God on the harp.
He covers the sky with clouds;
he supplies the earth with rain
and makes grass grow on the hills.
He provides food for the cattle
and for the young ravens when they call.
His pleasure is not in the strength of the horse,
nor his delight in the legs of the warrior;
the Lord delights in those who fear him,
who put their hope in his unfailing love.
Extol the Lord, Jerusalem;
praise your God, Zion.
He strengthens the bars of your gates
and blesses your people within you.
He grants peace to your borders
and satisfies you with the finest of wheat.
He sends his command to the earth;
his word runs swiftly.
He spreads the snow like wool
and scatters the frost like ashes.
He hurls down his hail like pebbles.
Who can withstand his icy blast?
He sends his word and melts them;
he stirs up his breezes, and the waters flow.
He has revealed his word to Jacob,
his laws and decrees to Israel.
He has done this for no other nation;
they do not know his laws.
Praise the Lord.
Count your blessings, name them one by one. “Didn’t we just do this?” That might be how you feel, considering we just had thanksgiving after all. Besides, we have so very many unmet needs, and so much to attend to particularly around this time of the year. The things we haven’t yet accomplished are far easier to focus on, as well as our gift shopping lists. How do we get to the place where we take the time to not only give God thanks for the things He has provided so far, but also for such things as the psalmist is praising God for? Such things as the gift of His Word, for rain, the clouds and so on? For one thing, we change our gaze, we shift our focus (for the moment) deliberately. Like the psalmist we choose to routinely include not just supplications and laments in our prayers and give praises and thanksgiving equally.
Questions to Ponder:
Do I give an equal amount of time and attention to God’s blessings as I do to my needs and wants? How can I balance my supplications and praise to the Lord?
Dear Lord, creator of all things thank you. Thank you for your unending mercy, thank you for your goodness to me and my family. Your love never fails, great is your faithfulness. Please open my eyes to see the abundance you have blessed me with, help me to appreciate not only your material provision for me but also the countless mercies and grace you grant me daily. Above all else thank you for your unfailing love and my salvation in Christ Jesus. Amen.
End with Posture of Silence and Solitude (2 minutes)