How Can I Say “Thank You”?

For You have delivered my soul from death, My eyes from tears, And my feet from falling.  I will walk before the Lord in the land of the living.

What shall I render to the Lord for all His benefits toward me?  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.

O, Lord, truly I am Your servant; I am Your servant…You have loosed my bonds.

I will offer to You the sacrifice of thanksgiving, and will call upon the name of the Lord.

I will pay my vows to the Lord now in the presence of all His people.

~ Psalm 116:8,9,12-14,16-18

What shall I render to the Lord for all His benefits towards me?  WOW!  What a question!

Do we really grasp the magnitude of God’s gifts to us?  I’ve made a short list of “general” gifts that God offers to everyone.  Here they are:

  • A desire to have an intimate personal relationship with us, even though we do not deserve it
  • Making a way to establish and maintain this relationship by giving us the sacrifice of “His Precious” – His One and Only Son – Who He loved!
  • Establishing, that through this sacrifice, we, not only are able to have that relationship with Him here on earth, but will enjoy that intimate relationship with Him throughout all of eternity.
  • Giving us the gift of the Holy Spirit, to enable us to live a life that is holy, and that honors Him in every way.
  • Providing for our needs according to His riches – not ours.
  • Allowing us to share in His working in the lives of others.
  • Peace that no one can understand.
  • Joy that doesn’t rely on our circumstances – but allows us to rejoice through them all!
  • Love that is perfect – casting our fear.
  • Hope – not only in the area of resurrection after death, but of living a victorious Christian life because of the resurrection power of Christ.
  • A plan for our lives – a single plan with one purpose – to be allowed to glorify Him in all that we do, think, say, and are.

I could list thousands of more “personal” provisions, but I just want to focus on the main ones that we have in common.

Think about this for a minute (since we seem to understand so much through role reversal):

You, have $1,000,000 – one million dollars.  That’s all that you have.  Now, there’s someone that you love who is being held captive, because of poor choices they had made.  The ransom is $1,000,000.  What do you do? (Not looking for the legal or police action here – just the ransom)

You pay the ransom, get your loved one back, looking forward to continuing the relationship with them.

Now, knowing that there is no way they can ever pay you back, and that you don’t want them only to love you for “paying for them”.  Let me ask you this:  How would their reaction to your act matter to you?

There are several ways that they could react to this action:

  • act like nothing happened, not even say thank you – almost as if you “owed” it to them
  • say, “Thanks” – then go right back to those things that captured them in the first place
  • say, and mean “Thank you so much” with their mouths, but do things that hurt you with their choices and actions
  • tell you, “I can’t believe what you gave for me.  I will be forever thankful for what you did, and because of what you did, I will make sure that our relationship reflects that thankfulness.  I will not make choices that hurt you, I will not take what you did for granted. I will put your interest ahead of my own, and love you always.”

Now, be honest – first in what you would most want their reaction to be – then, find yourself in this list best depicted in how you have reacted to God’s Ransom for you.

This, I believe, is what David meant by a sacrifice of thanksgiving.  Not just a “hallelujah” or “praise the Lord” with his words, but a life that is lived “taking up (accepting) the cup (gift) of salvation” and “paying (not saying) his vows to the Lord”.  

With all that my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, has done in my life, I know that there is only one answer for me….

I, too, will accept the gift of salvation and pay my vows to the Lord.

This means glorifying and honoring Him in every area of my life – work, rest, and play.

How do you do this?  By remembering one key factor – input=output.

When I feed God-honoring materials into my heart and mind, my actions, words – my very life will reflect this.

This means that I carefully guard everything that I: read, listen to, see, eat, and do.

Doing this all, not for (to earn) my salvation, but out of gratitude and thanksgiving because of my salvation.

1 Comment »

  1. Sharon Said:

    Wow, thanks that’s so well put and true!

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