"Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. For the Lord is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations”- Psalm 1004-5 (NIV)
In almost all monarchial states, whenever delegations are being ushered into the royal court, there are often greeted with trumpets blowing and an advance person singing praise to His or Her Majesty. The reason behind is that by the time one gets to meet the King or Queen, in person, such is already in the mood to receive the guest. Pleased, His Majesty gladly opens up to His visitors.
This is exactly what we are here being advised in our leading verse, that where we are entering into the presence of our heavenly Father, let us start with thanksgiving and praise. As one writer once observed we don’t enter into the presence of mere mortals, but a God who is the Father of all creations. If, earthly kings and queens, are worthy of this treat; then, how about the living God!
However, an important point is that we do this not as a hypocritical gesture, quite common in royal circles, where people blow trumpets to His majesty as a guise to seduce him award them something. In fact, in royal courts, praise singers have a tendency to overdo it, or compete in their adulation of His majesty. Theirs is often empty praise.
For Christians, our praise and thanksgiving must be genuine. When we look back at our lives we are indeed most grateful for all the good things God has done for us. How could we not, aware of His protection from disease and all manner of afflictions that could long have stricken us deathly blows. How could we not, looking back at all we have gathered in this life!
So, today, maybe one of those, when looking back at all Jehovah has done in your life, you enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise. As Psalm 145:3 says, “Great is the LORD and most worthy of praise; his greatness no one can fathom”
Prayer for today: Lord Father God of Abraham, maker of heaven earth, today I come into your presence with thanksgiving and praise, for you have been so good to me, I am thankful, and give you praise!
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23/02/2024 - 24/02/2024 All day
“The LORD will send rain at the proper time from his rich treasury in the heavens and will bless all the work you do. You will lend to many nations, but you will never need to borrow from them” – (Deuteronomy 28:2).
Every now and then one chances upon someone despising the importance of being enterprising. To some being enterprising can be equated to the love of money and it’s pitfalls (1 Tim 6:10). Others see it as being overtly worldly. Yet, far from it, being enterprising is clearly an avenue God has given believers to raise resources for their well-being and promotion of the rich Gospel.
The Bible is full of enterprising characters who were used mightily of God. Abraham was apparently a good rancher that he “become very wealthy in livestock and in silver and gold” (Gen 13:2). Job was hated by Satan who sought to destroy him because “He owned 7,000 sheep, 3,000 camels, 500 teams of oxen, and 500 female donkeys. He also had many servants. He was, in fact, the richest person in that entire area” (Job 1:3).
The Lord Jesus Christ was born and raised in the house of Joseph, the carpenter (Mathew 13:55). Carpenters do not create works of beauty to donate for free. To prosper they must run sustainable enterprises which pay taxes and make profit. The Apostle Paul would often rely on enterprising people to support him in his ministry. One of his worthy converts “was a woman named Lydia, a dealer in purple cloth. She was a worshiper of God (Acts 16:14).
Though Paul was a law don once he went to the mission field, other than cling to his titles by burdening his hosts he often dabbled in tent making to support himself. In Corinth he teamed up with an amazing couple, Priscilla and Aquila, and “because he was a tentmaker as they were, he stayed and worked with them” (Acts 18:3). This couple run a successful tent making business that enabled them support mission work.
And then of course, there is the noble woman of character, as told in Proverbs 31, who “selects wool and flax and works with eager hands. She is like the merchant ships, bringing her food from afar. She considers a field and buys it; out of her earnings.. She sees that her trading is profitable…She makes linen garments and sells them, and supplies the merchants with sashes (vv 13-25).
When the body of believers is filled with such enterprising people it generates resources important to sustain God’s work. Further, the work of God is then supported without being dependent on sources that might compromise the mission, as sometimes we see! Be enterprising!
Prayer for today: Lord father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, you who has given us the gift of enterprise, today I pray to use this gift to take care of my needs and support the expansion of your kingdom on earth, this I pray in Jesus’ Name.