“I will praise you with my whole heart;
Before the gods I will sing praises to You.
I will worship toward your holy temple,
And praise your name for Your lovingkindness
and Your truth;
For you have magnified Your word above all Your name.
When I called out, You answered me.
And made me bold with strength in my soul.”
Praising the Lord by cultivating a heart of gratitude & thankfulness is an essential part of the Christian journey, but even more so in our lives as believers when we walk through seasons of trials, tests of faith, or suffering. On so many occasions it is the smallest expressions of praise and thankfulness to the Lord that enable us to find the hope and strength to press on, to take further steps toward Christ our Savior, and in persevering along the journey especially when the path becomes difficult. We can derive from this text of scripture, that the Psalmist was well-acquainted with struggle and hardship as well as the Lord’s faithfulness to both hear and to strengthen him, “When I called out to you, You answered me. And made me bold with strength in my soul.”
In the opening verses, the Psalmist places strong emphasis on the praise and worship of His God, our God, the One who created us and is standing at the ready to meet our every need, and to walk with us on every step of life’s journey with Him. “I will praise you with my whole heart; Before the gods I will sing praises to You. I will worship toward your holy temple, and praise your name for Your lovingkindness and Your truth; For You have magnified Your word above all Your name.” Even on our most difficult days, we can choose to worship and praise God for His faithfulness. We can thank Him for His provision, His grace poured over our lives, His strength in us through the Holy Spirit, and for the hope in Christ Jesus He gives us to press on one step at a time.
This process of praising and thanking God begins with taking a few moments to be still and observe simple things to show gratitude for; things that may seem small and insignificant to mention, but nevertheless they begin to cultivate a heart of worship. For example, “God, thank you for waking me up for a new day, helping me to take a small step to get out of bed, to take a hot shower, to get dressed. Thank you that I have clothes to wear, for a morning cup of coffee, for family, for salvation through Jesus, and the grace, love, & forgiveness you pour over my life today.” As we continue to thank God throughout our day for things both simple and complex, large and small – we develop a heart of worship that changes our perspective and recalls God’s goodness, faithfulness, truth, love, provision, protection, and hope – both eternal hope and earthly hope this side of heaven. This heart of worship begins with the smallest of steps – showing gratitude for the person of God, for who He is and the many things He has done for us. Through a heart of gratitude and worship, God will strengthen your heart and soul for the day’s journey.
Father, I thank You that I can call out to You at any time regardless of my circumstances because You care about every detail of my life. (Psalm 55:22; 1 Peter 5:7) I desire to draw near to You as the Psalmist did through offering praise and worship for who You are and all that You are in my life. May You change the perspective of my heart and mind regardless of the circumstances or challenges I encounter today, strengthening my soul with Your word and Your presence. Continue to cultivate in me a heart of gratitude and worship so that I have eyes to see Your perspective on the events of my life, enabling me to wait on You to move. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.