WISDOM FOR LIVING DAILY DEVOTIONAL
DECEMBER 30, 2022
TOPIC: NEVER STOP THANKING GOD
BY T. O. BANSO
“You have turned for me my mourning into dancing; You have put off my sackcloth and clothed me with gladness, to the end that my glory may sing praise to You and not be silent. O LORD my God, I will give thanks to You forever” (Psalm 30:11-12 New King James Version).
Those who are forgetful, do not think, or are ungrateful, do not thank God for what He has done for them. Such people behave as if they are responsible for all the things God has done for them or that God has not done anything for them.
However, those who know that there is nothing they have that they have not received from God, acknowledge that He is the source of everything they have. They know that their efforts would not have yielded any appreciable result without God. They are, therefore, humble rather than proud concerning their achievements or success. Paul told the Corinthians, “For who makes you differ from another? And what do you have that you did not receive? Now if you did indeed receive it, why do you boast as if you had not received it?” (1 Corinthians 4:7 New King James Version).
One could pray and fast throughout the year, if there is no God who answers prayers, all his efforts would be in vain. And those who appear to have made the greatest progress or success, in the year that is ending, are not necessarily those who prayed and fasted the most, the most hard-working, or the most intelligent. Does that mean we shouldn’t pray and fast, be hardworking, or fulfil our other responsibilities in the New Year? No. We should, but we must acknowledge that answers are not dependent only on what we do but God. Proverbs 16:1 says, “The preparations of the heart belong to man, but the answer of the tongue is from the LORD” (New King James Version).
The English Standard Version puts it this way: “The plans of the heart belong to man, but the answer of the tongue is from the Lord.” And Today’s English Version renders it thus: “We may make our plans, but God has the last word.” God knows the thoughts that He thinks toward us, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give us a future and a hope (Jeremiah 29:11).
Therefore, we must not only give thanks to God, but we must also never stop thanking Him for all His benefits. Psalm 68:19 says, “Blessed be the Lord, Who daily loads us with benefits, the God of our salvation!” (New King James Version). The phrase “Who daily loads us with benefits’ also means who daily bears or carries our burdens. And if we are going to continue to thank Him for all His benefits, we must never forget them. Psalm 103:2 says, “Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits” (New King James Version). The phrase “all His benefits” in this verse means the good things the LORD does, His goodness, or His kind deeds. We must always remember them to be able to never stop thanking Him.
The writer of Psalm 116 asks, “What shall I render to the LORD For all His benefits toward me?” (Verse 12 New King James Version). He answers the question himself, saying, “I will take up the cup of salvation, and call upon the name of the LORD. I will pay my vows to the LORD Now in the presence of all His people” (verses 13-14 New King James Version). In other words, he will show gratitude to God for His benefits.
Because God continues to daily load us with benefits or bears our burden every day, we must never stop thanking Him. At this time of the year, reflect on all the past benefits, good things, goodness, or kind deeds you have enjoyed from God, especially in 2022, and thank Him. Never stop thanking Him for all He has done for you.
David said, “You have turned for me my mourning into dancing; You have put off my sackcloth and clothed me with gladness, to the end that my glory may sing praise to You and not be silent. O LORD my God, I will give thanks to You forever” (Psalm 30:11-12 New King James Version). Take note of the phrase “I will give thanks to You forever.” In other words, David would never stop thanking God; he would never become so familiar with God to become ungrateful.
I don’t know about you but, many times, when I remember some things God did for me many years ago, I thank Him again as if God has just done them. I call that new thanksgiving for old testimonies! Unfortunately, some ungrateful folks don’t thank God for the new things He has done for them let alone for what He did long ago. They take the blessings, kindness, or good deeds of God for granted. David said, “I will give thanks to You forever.” The Contemporary English Version renders the phrase as “I will never stop singing your praises.” You, too, should give Him thanks forever; you should never stop singing His praises. Never stop thanking God. He deserves it.
In 2 Samuel 22:50, David said, “Therefore I will give thanks to You, O LORD, among the Gentiles, and sing praises to Your name.” David records the same words in Psalm 18:49. Giving thanks to God among the Gentiles and singing praises to His name is a form of evangelism or publishing the good news about God - His love, power, and other attributes! 1 Chronicles 16:8 says, “Oh, give thanks to the LORD! Call upon His name; Make known His deeds among the peoples!” (New King James Version). Never stop thanking God.
In Psalm 136, four times the psalmist says we should give thanks to the LORD, whom he also refers to as the God of gods, the Lord of lords, and the God of heaven, for His mercy endures forever (verses 1, 2, 3, & 26). The phrase “For His mercy endures forever” is used in the New King James Version of the Bible 36 times while “His mercy endures forever” is used 40 times. If not for His mercy that endures in 2022, where would you be today? But because His mercy didn’t expire in 2021, you enjoyed it in the year ending a few hours from now. As Lamentation 3:22 says, through the LORD’S mercies we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not.
Never stop thanking God as you approach the New year. As you go about your daily activities and prepare for the New Year, keep thanking God. In the day, give thanks to God, and in the night, do the same. The psalmist says in Psalm 119:62 that at midnight, he will rise to give thanks to the LORD because of His righteous judgments. Give thanks to God for His mercy, goodness, and all you’ve enjoyed this year, including protection, healing and health, provision, favour, and deliverance.
In case you consider the year 2022 an unfavourable year, don’t forget you still have some reasons to give thanks to God, including the fact that you’re alive today. This means that there is still hope for you in the New Year and the coming years. 1 Thessalonians 5:18 says in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. Whether the year has been favourable or unfavourable to you, you have better days ahead of you. Your best days are ahead. Thank God for what He has prepared for you in 2023.
Never stop thanking God.
If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit that you are a sinner and you cannot save yourself and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start attending a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church. There they will teach you how to grow in the Kingdom of God.
Kindly say this prayer now: O Lord God, I come unto You today. I know I am a sinner and I cannot save myself. I believe that Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and God raised Him on the third day. I repent of my sins and confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I surrender my life to Jesus now and invite Him into my heart. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank You, Jesus, for saving me and making me a child of God.
I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You will need to join a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church in your area where they will teach you how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like a palm tree and grow like a cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I will be glad to hear from you. The Lord be with you.
PRAYER POINTS: Father, thank You for Your mercy that did not allow 2022 to consume or devour me. Thank You for Your goodness and all I’ve enjoyed in the year, including protection, healing and health, provision, favour, and deliverance. Father, I thank You for going ahead of me into the New Year to prosper my way.
(For over 800 in-depth and powerful messages by T. O. Banso, visit www.cedarministry.org).
T. O. Banso is the President of Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
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