One song that keeps recurring in my soul these days is the song that we sing often and that has its root in the songs of David. “Bless the Lord Oh my Soul” – Psalm 103:1a (KJV). This song is a song that comes forth from the deepest part of one’s heart. It is a song that comes forth because of deep reflection. I am not sure about you, but sometimes I have found myself in a deep reflection such that some high and low points of my life are played in my subconscious like a video reel. At the end of these reflections, I often find myself just blessing and praising the name of the Lord. Reading Psalm 103, we discover that this song may have come from such a time of reflection by King David.
King David was thinking deep and having a conversation with himself. I bet in that most reflective state he was also watching a movie about his life, a movie at which he has a front row seat. He suddenly remembered all the benefits of God in his life. He remembered it was God who forgave him, even when what he did amounted to murder, murder for selfish reasons. He remembered that when he was sick and in the lowest point of his life, it was God who healed him. He remembered that it was God who redeemed him from a life of destruction. This same God showed him mercies and satisfied his mouth with good things. In the stark reality of this moment King David had no control over the gratitude that swelled up in his heart. The heart of gratitude that came up in a song, “Bless the Lord Oh my Soul”! Have you found yourself in this situation? Have you found yourself in this time of deep reflection where you had no choice but to praise the name of the almighty God? Have you found yourself bursting out in songs of praise and worship when you remember the God who forgave you, healed you, preserves you, satisfies you, and blesses you with good things?
It is good to always have a time like this when we can reflect about God’s grace and mercy in our lives. It is very easy to always put ourselves in the place of a victim when things that are not very pleasant happen to us. That is the time we begin to ask, why me? But our God is full of mercy and grace, and He can help us through our life difficulties. We forget that our struggles are only a very small part of our life in general and that when we put our struggles and our blessings on a scale side by side, our blessings will always outweigh our struggles. Like the saying goes, many times we do not know what we have got until it is gone. Even when it is gone, instead of appreciating the moment we had such wonderful blessings, we resort to lamenting about our present predicament. The story was told of a Scottish preacher, Alexander Whyte. He was known to be thankful no matter the situation. One Sunday morning the weather was so gloomy that one church member thought to himself, “Certainly the preacher won’t think of anything for which to thank the Lord on a wretched day like this.” Much to his surprise, however, Whyte began by praying, “We thank Thee, O God, that it is not always like this.” If that parishioner could only be as reflective as Alexander Whyte…
Brethren, let us always be reflective in our relationship with God. David was reflective and his gratitude came up in a song that blessed the name of the Lord. Alexander Whyte was reflective and thanked God for the fact that the weather is not always gloomy. Let us bless the Lord whatever the situation we may be going through. The Christian injunction is for us to thank God in all circumstances. It is difficult to do because we always choose to thank God exclusively for personal benefits to us which the devil can destroy. The Word of our Lord Jesus Christ in Matthew 6:19-21 says “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” If we act like David and choose to thank God for those treasures that are laid up in heaven, even when our earthly treasures are not doing as well as we want, our soul will always bless the Lord even in our most difficult circumstances.
King David’s expression of gratitude came forth in the form of praise and thanksgiving, with the whole of his being, for the name of the Lord, his God, our God, who forgives, who heals, who preserves, who provides and who satisfies. On this day I pray that David’s example of addressing his own soul will be followed by all of us and our souls will also well up in praise and adoration of the one who has redeemed us. “Bless the Lord, O my soul; And all that is within me, bless His holy name!”
June 26, 2022 – Pastor Simbo Odunaiya