Bless the Lord, O My Soul

Bless the Lord, O My Soul
by Ronnie Hewitt
In just a few short days we will celebrate Thanksgiving Day. It is a shame that we, as a nation, have only one day set aside each year to give thanks to God. We should have some time set aside each day to give our praise to Him Who has blessed us so richly.
I was shopping not long ago in one of the local grocery stores and noticed that Thanksgiving has all but been overlooked. Christmas, because of its great commercial power, was already set up in the stores. Noticeably absent are the paper pilgrims that used to decorate the stores not too many years ago; but now, as soon as the big push to buy costumes and candy is over, out comes the commercialization of Christmas. We are bombarded with Santa Claus and snowmen.
But as God’s people it is fitting that we should focus our thoughts – not only now, but often – on the goodness of God; and offer our gratitude to Him for who He is and for all He has done for us.
Psalm 103 has been called David’s “Hallelujah Chorus.” In this text, he addresses his soul. He reminds himself and instructs his soul as he praises the Lord for all that God has done. It is a prayer of nothing but praise to God. There is no supplication, no request, no petition or plea in this prayer. It is pure unadulterated praise to God. David was awestruck with God’s blessings. We are not told the circumstances that prompted David to write this Psalm, but it is not difficult to imagine how it happened. Looking at his life, counting his blessings instead of complaining about his burdens; it dawned upon David just how much God had done for him. He realized how good God had been and how undeserving he was of all these blessings. Springing up from the depths of his heart and gushing out onto his parchment came this prayer of praise – this benediction expressing his gratitude toward the Lord.
I can see David – passionate, and full of emotion – praising God with all his heart. He’d have a difficult time in some of our churches today. These words were not dry and stale when David sang them. They were full of life and energy. He sang these words with the utmost joy and the deepest desire to let God – and anyone else who could hear it – know just how much he wanted God to receive the praise and glory. Praising God wasn’t something he only did at the temple during religious ceremonies, it was part of his everyday experience. He was grateful to the Lord and could not help but praise Him.
So, as we prepare for Thanksgiving, take some time to read Psalm 103; and let’s allow our praise to become a part of our everyday experience, rather than just one time a year. Sing His praises and thank Him for all His blessings.