Yesterday, we examined the first two of how to pray, using the ACTS acronym.
WE did adoration and confession. Now is thanksgiving.
So, how do you find which Psalm is a thanksgiving psalm? Well, in the King James… they usually tell you!
“A Psalm and Song at the dedication of the house of David. I will extol thee, O LORD; for thou hast lifted me up, And hast not made my foes to rejoice over me. O LORD my God, I cried unto thee, and thou hast healed me. O LORD, thou hast brought up my soul from the grave: Thou hast kept me alive, that I should not go down to the pit. Sing unto the LORD, O ye saints of his, And give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness. For his anger endureth but a moment; in his favour is life: Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning. And in my prosperity I said, I shall never be moved. LORD, by thy favour thou hast Made my mountain to stand strong: Thou didst hide thy face, and I was troubled. I cried to thee, O LORD; And unto the LORD I made supplication. What profit is there in my blood, when I go down to the pit? Shall the dust praise thee? shall it declare thy truth? Hear, O LORD, and have mercy upon me: LORD, be thou my helper. Thou hast turned for me my mourning into dancing: Thou hast put off my sackcloth, and girded me with gladness; To the end that my glory may sing praise to thee, and not be silent. O LORD my God, I will give thanks unto thee for ever.” (Psalm 30, KJV)
Again, using what we learned yesterday… we’re going to take single verses, and make them personal.
“Lord, I thiank you that your anger endures only for a moment.” Sounds harsh? LIsten, if you took a good 5 minutes and went through your life, and thought about God’s restraint against sin, how He should have punished you every time you sinned (but didn’t)… you’d have no problem praying that.
“Lord, I thank you that you have kept me alive.” You know, how many close calls have you had? I’ve had several. More than my fair share. Remember that time you just changed lanes in your car, then looked in the rearview mirror and eralized how close you came to driving into a semi truck? Remember that time you got the flu, and lived? Some people don’t. When I was a kid, some new sinus medication came out that they never tested, and somehow the FDA never realized it. I took it, and had serious chest pains for several minutes. Later that week, the news reported they took it off the market… because it was killing people from heart attacks.
Yeah, that’s a good prayer to pray.
Now, let’s move to supplication. THis part, we’re all experts in. I don’t need to teach you this. Just remember, prayer is not about “gimme gimme gimme”. Prayer should be about spending time with God. Believe it or not… human beings are designed to praise God. It is what we’re designed for, besides tending His creation. We should be caring for animals (part of our design), caring for gardens (part of our design), and praising God (part of our design).
This is the tip of the iceberg. Sometimes I praise God for the universe He made. Sometimes I praise God for snow. I just had a dream where we got three feet of snow, something I’ve actually lived through. It was wonderful. Except it took until late May for all that snow to melt.
Sometimes I praise God for the ocean. A house on a good rocky shore would be a wonderful place to live.
These are your prayers. I’ve given you some ideas. Run with them!