Let’s start our prayer with praise and thanksgiving because unless we’re thankful for what we already have, we won’t have interest, desire, joy, strength and faith to ask more.
“Bless the Lord, O my soul,
And all that is within me, bless His holy name.
Bless the Lord, O my soul,
And forget none of His benefits;
Who pardons all your iniquities,
Who heals all your diseases;
Who redeems your life from the pit,
Who crowns you with lovingkindness and compassion;
Who satisfies your years with good things,
So that your youth is renewed like the eagle.” Psalm 103:1-5 NASB
Notice! It says: Forget none of His benefits! Why? We tend to forget. We tend to focus on what we don’t have and consider what we already have as nothing.
What are the Lord’s benefits?
1. God forgave our iniquities!
You know what this means? It means, God chose to forgive us. Why? We don’t know. We just know that we are forgiven!
God says, “I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.” Romans 9:15 NASB
“So then it does not depend on the man who wills or the man who runs, but on God who has mercy.” Romans 9:16 NASB
So David sang to the LORD saying,
“How blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven,
Whose sin is covered!” Psalm 32:1 NASB
2. God heals all our diseases
Whether this is talking about spiritual or physical diseases, the point is God is our Healer! God heals all our diseases. Life itself, as one Bible scholar said, is “a terminal sickness.” It ends with death; “but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners (“dead in your trespasses and sins”), Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8 ESV
God heals all our sicknesses, brokenness and shortcomings. The ones which are still lingering with us are accomplishing God’s greater purpose in us. Praise God!
3. God redeems our lives from the pit
John says, “He that has the Son[Jesus Christ] has life. He that does not have the Son of God does not have life. I have written this to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know you have eternal life.” 1 John 5:12-13 NLT
It is not like, “you may have eternal life when you die,” or, “After you die, God may have mercy on you if your good deeds outweigh your bad deeds.”
No! It says, “You have eternal life!” When? Now! Even if you walk and live like everybody else, you have an eternal life because you believe in the Lord Jesus Christ. You believe in the work of the cross.
4. God crowns us with lovingkindness and compassion
“in order to make known the riches of his glory for vessels of mercy, which he has prepared beforehand for glory— even us whom he has called, not from the Jews only but also from the Gentiles? As indeed he says in Hosea,
“Those who were not my people I will call ‘my people,’
and her who was not beloved I will call ‘beloved.’”
“And in the very place where it was said to them, ‘You are not my people,’
there they will be called ‘sons of the living God.’”” Romans 9:23-26 ESV
and “to the praise of the glory of His grace, with which He favored us in the Beloved.” Ephesians 1:6 NASB
Did you see that?
He chose us beforehand as vessels of mercy to lavishly show the glory of His grace!
When all the angelica beings see us in heaven, their jaws will drop saying, “No way! You belong here?”
Their jaws are not dropped for us but for the glory of God’s mercy seen through Jesus Christ that makes a sinner a citizen of heaven. The angelical beings will eternally be mesmerized by the truth, grace and mercy of God that has been revealed through Jesus Christ.
5. God satisfies our lives with good things
“I will make an everlasting covenant with them that I will not turn away from them, to do them good; and I will put the fear of Me in their hearts so that they will not turn away from Me. I will rejoice over them to do them good and will faithfully plant them in this land with all My heart and with all My soul.” Jeremiah 32:40-41 NASB
Did you read that?
There is nothing “gooder” for us than God’s gift of eternal life, that He put the fear of Him in our hears so that we won’t turn away from Him. Wow! Preservation of the saints!
And God delights in doing us good! We just don’t see it. We live because of God’s goodness!
6. Our youth will be renewed like the eagle
I think this says, God will make us productive and fruitful throughout our lives no matter how old we get.
So, just look at those benefits of God we have in Christ Jesus!
After we go through this list of benefits, will we have any major prayer request??????
Yes! Our prayer list looks so childish and irrelevant. But with the spirit of gratitude, we present our childish request to our Father because He said,
“Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. Or what man is there among you who, when his son asks for a loaf, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, he will not give him a snake, will he? If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give what is good to those who ask Him!” Matthew 7:7-11 NASB
The take home message of today’s Bible study is this: Let’s teach our soul to count and thank God for the things she has already received from God. ///