David Gives Thanks to the Lord
Open Your Bible
1 Chronicles 15:1-29, 1 Chronicles 16:1-43, Hebrews 13:15
Have you ever kept a gratitude journal? Or made a list of things you’re thankful for during a time when thankfulness was the furthest thing from your mind? I don’t know about you, but I always doubt this practice until I’m doing it. It can feel silly at the moment and wholly inadequate for fixing whatever discontentment is taking root in my heart. But no matter how discouraged or far from God I feel, writing down His blessings consistently changes me.
And it doesn’t have to sound overly spiritual. Sometimes, my journal pages are filled with God’s attributes, and other times it’s as simple as a mug of Glazed Lemon Loaf tea or a voice memo from my best friend. God’s blessings are abundant, and His faithfulness can be seen in every moment of our lives if we look through the lens of belief.
In today’s passages from 1 Chronicles, we find a similar practice. After David and the Levites found a place for the ark of the covenant in Jerusalem, David marks this holy moment with a blessing for God’s people and a psalm of thanksgiving. “Give thanks to the LORD; call on his name; proclaim his deeds among the peoples,” (1Chronicles 16:8).
For six paragraphs, we read David’s call for gratitude. Each one is full of action words, commanding God’s people to sing, worship, seek God’s strength, rejoice and remember His works (vv.8–36). Doing so will change them. Unlike other religions, God’s people do not worship a distant or impersonal god but One who is active—and who remains faithful despite our disobedient behavior.
Like the Israelites, maybe we need a reminder of these deeds. First, God made a covenant with His people. He remained faithful when they were faithless. He continues to speak to them through the words of David and others. And He gave them the hope of a Messiah.
This kind of thanksgiving-infused praise should be central to our faith today (Hebrews 13:15). Like keeping a gratitude journal, it won’t always come easy at first. But it will change us. It’s also an act of obedience. When we turn our attention to the Lord and remember His faithfulness in our lives, our griefs and day-to-day worries become easier to bear because we remember we know the One companion who helps us carry them.