Take some time to read Psalm 104.
Almost 4 years ago I found myself crying at the drop of a hat. Sad tears. Not the kind of tears that surfaced from a cute Hallmark commercial, but tears that came from my depths. Tears that felt like hopelessness and depression. Lonely, dark, scary tears. My husband and I were in the process of infertility treatments and I was so tired (thank you God for bringing us through that season).
While at church, one Sunday morning, my husband graciously led me to a wise woman and I asked her to pray for me. I barely got any words out before I started weeping and leaning into her arms. She pulled me back and looked at me and said, “Martha, you are not depressed. You just need time with Jesus.” That was profound to me in that moment. I held onto those words as a reminder to seek Jesus.
Later, I made time to be with Jesus. I planned to go for a walk and listen to worship music, but as I stepped outside it was pouring rain. I hesitated a moment and then, determined to be with Jesus, I stepped back outside. I barely started walking when I broke down and sobbed. I began to praise God and thank him even for this tough season.
Something changed in me when I started to thank God for the trees, the flowers, and the rain pouring down over my head. I was able to take a deep breath and rest in the fact that, if God takes care of all his other creations, he would take care of me…his most-prized creation.
Everything and everyone is created with purpose and the Lord provides what is necessary to be sustained. Jesus is all we need to be sustained and we can be fully satisfied in his presence.
Praise and thanksgiving brings us into God’s presence and allows us to experience his power and peace. In Psalm 104, the psalmist looks over all God has made and gives thanks.
We need to cultivate a heart of thankfulness and praise. If we focus on Jesus and His power, our struggles seem smaller and more manageable. To quote the movie Frozen, “It’s funny how some distance makes everything seem small. The fear that once controlled me can’t get to me at all.”
As we focus on Jesus we gain perspective. For me, it was remembering that God is way bigger than my problems and he is more than capable of handling them for me…if I allow him control. We need to make God our strength and lean on him, to be in his presence.
Look out at God’s creation today and notice the detail, the beauty, the provision for it to grow and be what God has called it to be. Then, begin to give thanks. Above all created things, God has chosen to have relationship with you! You are his Chosen.
One of the coolest things to witness is God’s creation doing what it’s supposed to do. I love watching a garden sprout and grow and bear fruit. The whole process from planting seeds and watering them to seeing the seeds become what they were intended to become is so fulfilling.
|Red Cole Photo|
Imagine God’s delight when we decide to just be who he has created us to be and let him take care of all the rest. “I’m a mess, but I’m His masterpiece and that’s enough” (quote from Mom’s Night Out).
God doesn’t make mistakes.
God doesn’t screw up.
God doesn’t have “oopsies”, accidents, or “uh oh’s.”
God made you with divine purpose. So, when the psalmist looked out at nature and saw the beauty and majesty and greatness of the handiwork of the Creator God, it caused a realization that ALL of God’s creation is beautiful and made to praise Him. We too are an amazingly complex and beautiful handiwork of the Majestic King of the Universe.
Psalm 104:33-34 “I will sing to the Lord all my life; I will sing praise to my God as long as I live. May my meditation be pleasing to him, as I rejoice in the Lord.”
Giving praise and thanks,
1. Reread Psalm 104. Make a list of all the things the Lord does or is (vs. 1 The Lord is very great. He is clothed with splendor and majesty; vs. 2 He wraps Himself in light as with a garment, etc.).
2. Turn this list into a prayer or spend some time really thinking about each thing or attribute on the list.
3. Talk a walk today, or at least spend some time looking out your windows. What do you see? Take note of the details of God’s creation and reflect on the depths of His love for you.