Summary: We can thank God because of His open hands; He satisfies our desires with good things.

Thanksgiving – November 23, 2011 Psalm 145:15-16

The eyes of all look to you, and you give them their food at the proper time. You open your hand and satisfy the desires of every living thing.

At first blush this verse looks to be a lie. The eyes of all don’t look to God for their food. They look to their job for their food. They look to their parents for their clothes. They look to their 401k plans and Social Security for their future. These are their gods that they look to. And we aren’t much better. We don’t wake up in the morning and pray for food. We don’t thank Him every night for giving us a house and a bed and food to eat. We just assume that the food will come as long as our parents are alive and we have the ability to earn it. Perhaps this should read, “The eyes of a few look to you. The rest take you for granted and expect you to wait on them hand and food without a word of thanks.” That would seem to be more honest.

But this is God’s Word. When he writes that the eyes of ALL look to you, he is referring to all walks of life: all areas of creation. This is clear from Psalm 104 which takes more time to describe the “all.”

Psalm 104:18-30 The high mountains belong to the wild goats; the crags are a refuge for the coneys. The moon marks off the seasons, and the sun knows when to go down. You bring darkness, it becomes night, and all the beasts of the forest prowl. The lions roar for their prey and seek their food from God. The sun rises, and they steal away; they return and lie down in their dens. Then man goes out to his work, to his labor until evening. How many are your works, O LORD! In wisdom you made them all; the earth is full of your creatures. There is the sea, vast and spacious, teeming with creatures beyond number— living things both large and small. There the ships go to and fro, and the leviathan, which you formed to frolic there. These all look to you to give them their food at the proper time. When you give it to them, they gather it up; when you open your hand, they are satisfied with good things. When you hide your face, they are terrified; when you take away their breath, they die and return to the dust. When you send your Spirit, they are created, and you renew the face of the earth.

The wild goats of the mountains and fierce beasts of the sea are fed and sheltered by God. No matter how big or small, how high or low, they all look to the Lord to take care of them. God gladly takes on the feeding of all of them. It is well within His means and might to do so. He takes care of all, and He also wants all to see that He is the giver of everything.

The Eyes of All Look to You

I. Because you have an open hand

One fun game my child likes to play is to hide one object in one of two hands. It is up to the other person to guess which hand it is in. When the hand is opened, then you find out if you picked the right hand or not. God is not a tight fisted God. He loves to give. He has huge hands that can hold tons of blessings. He is a generous God who loves to open His hand; and His palm is never empty; both of His palms are full. You don’t have to guess which one is full; they both are.

He loves to “give them their food.” The word for “food” is used to describe the basic necessities of life. It is used of how God provided for people before the Fall in the Garden of Eden, during the Flood on the ark, and after the Flood. It is also used of the Manna that was found in the desert. No matter what form it is in, fruit of the trees or meat of the animal or Manna on the ground, all is from God. Even the food that is earned and baked is still a gift from God. Deuteronomy 8:17-18 says,

You may say to yourself, “My power and the strength of my hands have produced this wealth for me.” But remember the LORD your God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth, and so confirms his covenant, which he swore to your forefathers, as it is today.

When we give thanks to the Lord we are recognizing where our gifts come from. Our eyes are looking up to Him and saying to Him, “Thank you.” We are publicly acknowledging God as a gracious and giving God. When we only go about our work and pay our bills with the understanding that we will always have the health or the wealth to purchase what we want when we want, we are leaving God out of the picture. We are only looking at our ability for our future. We are not giving God the credit He deserves. We are making ourselves into our own gods. When we complain to Him because we don’t have as many clothes as our classmates; when we don’t have the electronic toys or the big screens; when our jobs don’t pay as well; we are really treating God as if He’s been cheap and tight fisted with us.

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