Summary: We often think of God blessing us, but what about us blessing God? David gives us some good reasons to bless God. Check out these thoughts from our Family Minister, Scott Jewell.

Read Psalm 103:1-5

Brother Roger, a reformed minister, moved to Taizé, France in 1940 to re-establish a form of monastic communal living that had been a tradition in that area back in medieval times. The community became known as a place for the down and out. In the 60s, young adults began to make the pilgrimage to Taizé to experience this ministry of reconciliation and prayer. So many people from all over the world were coming that they found it difficult to worship together with the complex music they often used. They brought in a French organist to help them take some of the Psalms and turn them into songs that their international community could sing together. One of those songs starts like this:

Sing- “Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless His holy name!”

Bless the Lord. Such a strange concept, reverse of what we normally think, isn’t it? Somebody sneezes, you say, “God bless you.” Somebody says or does something incredibly stupid- “Aww, bless your heart.” When we’re saying goodbye, we often say, “God bless.” We say we’re blessed when we’re referring to something special in our lives- “My family has been blessed to have the home in which we live.” We talk about being blessed to have made it through a difficult spot in our lives. We tell someone they’re a blessing out of gratitude for something they’ve done on our behalf. Usually we think of God as the giver of blessings, rarely is He the recipient.

This psalm was written by King David- I picture him near the end of his life, possibly on the roof of his palace, looking out over the kingdom. He sees Jerusalem in all its splendor, he looks beyond to the expansive kingdom, and he begins to reflect on all the times God has taken care of him. Whether it was giving him the ability to defeat the lion or the wolf that was attacking his flock of sheep, empowering him to defeat the giant Goliath with 5 smooth stones, to protecting him from King Saul when he tried to take David’s life on multiple occasions. All the times that God protected David as Israel waged war and expanded their territory, even in those times when David failed- like the time he saw Bathsheba from that rooftop and committed adultery or when his son Absalom tried to take over the kingdom and he had to flee Jerusalem. God continually watched over David. As he reflected on all these things, I believe God gave David a glimpse of heaven. Overwhelmed with it all, I picture him falling to his knees as the emotions rush over him and he bursts out in song.

Sing- “Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless His holy name!”

David then goes on to tell us why we should bless the Lord, listing the promises God has given to all who follow Him.

1- God forgives all your iniquity. How does this happen? God created everything to perfection. Adam and Eve messed that up in the Garden of Eden, bringing sin into the world. God knew that man couldn’t fix this on his own, so he sent Jesus to pay the price for us through His death, burial, and resurrection. Peter answers the question of what we must then do to receive this forgiveness. Read Acts 2:38. Believe in Jesus Christ and what He has done for you. Repent of your sins and turn to God. Confess that you are making Jesus master of your life. Be baptized to be forgiven. Live for God.

Now, a lot of teens that I minister with get all this and some of them still haven’t made their commitment yet. Why? Because they’re afraid they’ll mess up after being baptized and God will turn them away. But that’s not the case. 1 John 1:9 tells us that God continues to forgive- we confess and He’ll forgive. The only way this stops is we stop asking for it. God forgives ALL our iniquities.

2- God heals all your diseases. We’ve seen a lot of people who are part of our church be healed. Seven or eight people have come for prayer because of cancer that have brought back praise reports that the cancer is gone, be it divine intervention alone, medical treatment, or surgery. But there are also some who may be thinking, “But I haven’t been healed. How can you make this claim?” Indulge me for a minute, as I’m reminded of when my girls were little and VeggieTales were played quite often in our home. My mind goes to a segment they call, “Silly Songs with Larry” (the point where Larry comes out and sings a silly song). There is one video where Larry the Cucumber begins singing that everybody’s got a water buffalo until he’s interrupted by Archibald the Asparagus. “You can’t say everybody’s got a water buffalo, not everybody’s got a water buffalo. Little Billy’s going to be writing in asking where’s his water buffalo. You can’t say that!”

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