Praying the Psalms ~ The List

Let’s keep the list going. Can you add to it?

“Praise the Lord! Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever! Who can utter the mighty deeds of the Lord, or declare all his praise?” [Psalms 106:1‭-‬2 ESV]

Who can utter Your mighty deeds, Oh Lord?
Who can declare all your praise?
I will certainly try but my list will be far from complete.
For Your deeds are numerous and Your faithfulness unending.
Your love endures forever and Your might is unmatched.
You created all that I can and can not see.
Your creation is a thing of beauty.
Your wonders never cease.
You formed me from within my mother’s womb – I came forth from You.
You breathed life into me.
You declared all life to be precious.
Though a sinner You gave me Jesus.
Though a sinner You gave me Your Spirit.
Thus, I will live with You.
You raise up the lowly.
You humble the proud.
Hand in hand, we will stand before You in worship.
You have defeated all Your enemies.
You have subdued them all.
You have chased away my fear.
Oh God,
You are worthy of my worship.
You are worthy of all honor.
You are my God.
You are always with me – never have You departed.
You are always true – never have You been deceptive.
You are always holy – never to be corrupted.
You are.
Oh Lord, this is but a minuscule list – so much more can be said.
And so I will continue to praise and give You thanks, for Your steadfast love endures forever and ever.
Amen.

Something Different

I did something different last night.

Last night was Thanksgiving Eve worship. The service itself was pretty straight forward; nothing out of the ordinary. We did accept non-perishable food items as part of the offering, but that’s not weird; especially for Thanksgiving. The “different” happened during the “Prayers of Thanksgiving”; the spot where, on Sunday, the bulletin reads, “Prayers of the Church”. On Sundays I simply lead those prayers by ending each petition with “Lord in your mercy”, to which the congregation responds, “Hear our prayer”. Last night, though, I did something different.

[What is it already? Stop beating around the bush!]
[Easy now, I’m getting to it.]

During the “Prayers of Thanksgiving” I explained that I was going to start and then let the congregation add what they are thankful for. It was going to be like what many families do at Thanksgiving; going around the table sharing what they are thankful for, much to the chagrin of many children.

[Hurry up, I want some pumpkin pie]

I finished my part of the prayer and was blown away by what happened next. People didn’t just name something they were thankful for, but rather they prayed a prayer, giving thanks and praise to God. The Prayers of Thanksgiving turned into a genuine Prayers of the Church or Prayers of the People. I mean, that’s how it is supposed to be, right? People prayed from their heart. I almost felt bad ending the prayers when I did. We could have gone on for quite a while. People offered up a variety of prayers but the overwhelming topic of the prayers was Jesus and the salvation we have through him. Kind of puts Thanksgiving into perspective, doesn’t it?

Sure, I am thankful for my wife and children. I am thankful for my home and clothes and food on my table. I am thankful for my health and ability to earn a living. Those things are great and I thank God for them. Most of all, though, is the blessing of all blessings: Jesus. Period. For without him, everything else is just stuff that will fade away.

And now, I hope “the different” that happened last night becomes “the norm” for future worship services; people praying the prayers of the church. The people offering their petitions. Yes, I going to do that “different” thing again. So get ready, Living Word, your pastor is going to change some things up 🙂

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever. Give thanks to the God of gods, for his steadfast love endures forever. Give thanks to the Lord of lords, for his steadfast love endures forever. [Psalm 136:1-3]

Have a fantastic Thanksgiving; giving Him all your thanks and praise; for His steadfast loves endures forever and ever. Amen.

The Pastor -|—