Today, I find myself meditating on Psalm 107. As I read through it, I quickly assessed that this is one of God’s selfies we’ve been talking about in my last two blogs. I’d like for us to look at this Psalm together. Are you up for it? Great . . . here we go. Let’s start the same way as the writer of the passage – with thanks! Appropriate – given that it’s Thanksgiving, right? 😊
Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good;
His love endures forever.
Let the redeemed of the Lord say this –
those He redeemed from the hand of the foe,
those He gathered from the lands,
from the east and west, from north and south.
Who does this writer say is supposed to give thanks? Well, everyone – all people from the four corners of the world. Those from the north, south, east, and west. All peoples are to thank God for what He has done. Next, the writer is going to lay out some examples of why God deserves our thanks.
Each example follows the same format:
1. Identification of someone in a difficult situation
2. A brief description of how it’s impacting their life
3. Their breaking point – “They cry out to God”
4. A description of how God RESCUES them
5. Exhortation to thank God for how He rescues
I want to share a couple of these examples with you. After reading the ones below, you can come back to this link to find the entire passage on Bible Gateway’s website. Read Psalm 107.
Example One: Psalm 107:4-9
Some wandered in desert wastelands, finding no way to a city where they could settle. They were hungry and thirsty, and their lives ebbed away.
Then, they cried out to the Lord in their trouble, and He delivered them from their distress. He led them by a straight way to a city where they could settle.
Let them give thanks to the Lord for His unfailing love and His wonderful deeds for men, for He satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things.
Do you see the pattern in the way I highlighted the passage? Here’s a tip for you. When I read passages, I like to pull out the main words – you know – the subject and verbs. Ugh, I know – it’s been way too long since learning about grammar, right? Okay, let me put it like this. Read a sentence and pull out only as much as is needed to make a complete thought. Here is how I would whittle down the passage above.
Some wandered in desert
They were hungry and thirsty
They cried out to God
He delivered them
Let them give thanks
He satisfied their thirst and filled their hunger
Now you try it.
Example two: Psalm 107:10-16
Some sat in darkness and the deepest gloom, prisoners suffering in iron chains, for they rebelled against the words of God and despised the counsel of the most High.
So, He subjected them to bitter labor; they stumbled and there was no one to help.
Then, they cried to the Lord in their trouble, and He saved them from their distress. He brought them out of the darkness and the deepest gloom and broke away their chains.
Let them give thanks to the Lord for His unfailing love and His wonderful deeds for men.
For He breaks down gates of bronze and cuts through the bars of iron.
How did you do? Can you see the pattern? I sure hope so.
Once you see the pattern, a truth emerges within each example. When God rescues them, He does so in a way that is specific to their need.
In example one, they were hungry and thirsty because they wandered. GOD RESCUES THEM. They are instructed to give thanks to God who satisfies hunger and thirst.
In example two, they were prisoners in chains. GOD RESCUES THEM. They are instructed to thank God who breaks down prison walls of iron and bronze.
I am so thankful that we have a personal God. He knows our specific need and meets us in that place.
Think back over your life. How has God rescued you in specific ways . . . from whatever pit you were in? Give Him thanks as God who _________________. I’ll let you fill in the blank.
Perhaps you need rescuing from something right now. Can I encourage you to give Him thanks? For He is able to meet you at the exact point of your need. Cry out to Him, and He will come!
Oh, praise Him, all people! For our God IS a God who saves.
Song Share: Rescuer – Rend Collective