Giving Thanks: And We Matter to God

Happy Thanksgiving!

Let’s take time to reflect in between early shopping,volunteering at the soup kitchen,watching football or second helpings- and let’s notice evidences of God’s awesomeness.

Here’s an ancient Song of Praise and Thanksgiving that we can still “sing” today:

O Eternal, our Lord, Your majestic name is heard throughout the earth;Your magnificent glory shines far above the skies.

From the mouths and souls of infants and toddlers, the most innocent, You have decreed power to stop Your adversaries and quash those who seek revenge.

When I gaze to the skies and meditate on Your creation— on the moon, stars, and all You have made,

I can’t help but wonder why You care about mortals— sons and daughters of men— specks of dust floating about the cosmos.

But You placed the son of man just beneath God and honored him like royalty, crowning him with glory and honor.

You ordained him to govern the works of Your hands, to nurture the offspring of Your divine imagination; You placed everything on earth beneath his feet:

All kinds of domesticated animals, even the wild animals in the fields and forests,

The birds of the sky and the fish of the sea, all the multitudes of living things that travel the currents of the oceans.

O Eternal, our Lord, Your majestic name is heard throughout the earth.

~King David, Psalm 8 1

You matter to God. What other encouraging message(s) do you see in this Psalm?

I received a prayer journal. Now what?

journaling

Journals are a great tool for capturing and organizing your thoughts during your quiet time with God. Writing your prayers can be a source of encouragement because you can look back days,weeks or years from now and chart your progress or be encouraged by how God has led you thus far.

During our First 40 days or a personal time of Fasting, use a journal to write down your prayers and reflection on  Scripture passages. Save these entries. You never know who might need to hear the encouragement you find.

Here are some tips for recording your daily devotionals and Bible reading responses:

  1. Find a quiet spot today. Bring your Bible and journal.
  2. After a prayer for God’s guidance, read the Bible passage for the day. Read it over two or three times.
  3. Answer the Daily Reflection and Weekly Action questions below. This is not a quiz: it’s not about the “right” answers. Read the psalm. They are written prayers that were actually sung. Not all of them convey happy thoughts. They are often raw and come from a real place in the psalmist’s heart as he reaches out to God. Here we go:

Daily Reflection

  • What is God revealing about Himself through the day’s reading and Bible reference?
  • What  is God inviting you to believe,do or desire?
  • What is your response?
  • What is your prayer?
  • What is your praise?

Weekly Action

Share your experience with someone. Find someone else who needs to see the Gospel alive through you. It may end up being the same person!

  • Who needs your prayer?
  • Who needs your encouragement?

When it comes to journaling, click HERE to find an additional guide to get you started. It even provides a great acronym to structure your entries. Also consider getting a free account with YouVersion to get you started with a Bible plan,and start practicing with journaling!

What’s been your biggest obstacle to journaling? What are the benefits that you have experienced   from  journaling or writing down your conversations with God? What Bible book, plan or reading guide have you found particularly helpful?