PSALM 103 - A GRATEFUL HEART Print E-mail

THANKSGIVING – A GRATEFUL HEART

PSALM 103

November 24, 2019, the Year of Our Lord

Pastor Carolyn Sissom

 

Dream I had in November 2014:   “I was in the middle of a field---crowds began to gather to hear the word of the Lord.  A voice said, “Carolyn call them to worship and when they are worshipping and praising me, I will release the treasures of Heaven to them”.

 

Let us continually remember God’s innumerable benefits.  His goodness and mercy have followed us all the days of our life from our first breath until the present hour.   He is ever mindful of His beloved by day and night, at home and abroad, in health and sickness.  He has delivered us from our fears and blessed us far above our utmost expectations.

 

Through His precious Holy Spirit, Jesus has released to us the treasures of Heaven through gifts of the Holy Spirit, joy, peace and righteousness.

 

Isa. 45:4: I will give you the treasures of darkness and hidden riches of secret places that you may know that it is I, the Lord, the God of Israel, who calls you by your name.

 

A grateful heart is a gracious heart.  A gracious heart is a Godly heart.

 

Prov. 8:20-21: I lead in the way of righteousness, in the midst of the paths of judgment.  That I may cause those that love me to inherit substance; and I will fill their treasures.

 

Oh that we would praise him with hearts filled with Him and find this privilege of grace worth thousands of worlds. 

 

Psalm 103:1 -5: A Psalm of David.
Bless the L
ORD, O my soul;
And all that is within me, bless His holy name!

Bless the LORD, O my soul,
and forget not all His benefit.  Who forgives all our iniquities,
Who heals all our diseases,

Who redeems our life from destruction,
Who crowns us with loving kindness and tender mercies,

Who satisfies our mouth with good things,
So that our youth is renewed like the eagles
.

 

Some are persuaded Psalm 103 is the most perfect song of worship and praise in the Bible.  For me, whatever passage of the Bible I am reading  is perfect.  Psalm 103 begins with praising God for His loving kindness toward each one of us; then proceeds with national blessings, and ends with all the hosts in the vast dominion of the LORD.

 

I am persuaded in 2019, the LORD has been “passing through” our nation as well as all the nations of the earth in Justice.  He forgives (“passes over”) our sins as He looks upon the Blood of Jesus Christ.

 

Psalm 103:6: - The LORD executes righteousness
And justice for all who are oppressed
.

 

Friday at Prayer Net, I felt the Lord’s river of justice and righteousness flowing out of my belly like a mighty river growing stronger and stronger as the Church begins flowing in this mighty stream.

 

Amos 5:24 - But let judgment run down as waters, and righteousness as a mighty stream.

 

This verse has been our cry for justice during the Robert Mueller coup and the Schiff coup.  Amos was a prophet of Justice.  Amos declares God’s justice to those who rebel against God, His way, His will, His choice, and His divine purposes.  Amos’ words are God’s words.  In God, there is no variableness or shadow of turning.

 

The failure of the courts to provide the justice of God is one of the continuing themes of Amos’ prophecy.  The rulers of the nations had forgotten the meaning of justice and righteousness.

 

Psalm103:7: - He made known His ways to Moses,
His acts to the children of Israel.

 

Moses’ ever attitude and action gave praise and honor unto God.  No wonder God highly exalted him before them all, giving him honor and glory above all the sons of Israel! 

 

Those who honor God are honored of God.  Those who exalt Him and humble themselves are sure to be exalted in due season.  Those who praise God, receive the praise of God. 

 

Just as God revealed himself in mighty deliverance to Moses and the children of Israel by “passing through” Egypt in judgment; He also sent His destroying angel to bring about their judgment when they rebelled against Him.

 

In order that He might take up His dwelling on earth among men, He chose Israel, a people dear unto Himself and ordained them for His praise.  He was not content to dwell with one man or with one family.  No! There must be a holy nation, a people prepared for His glory.  He never lost sight of this purpose during the long years of His dealings with Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and his sons.  Their failures and sins did not annul His will nor diminish His relentless desire for a people with whom He could commune, and in whom He could be manifest to the world.

 

Psalm 103:8 -9:  The LORD is merciful and gracious,
Slow to anger, and abounding in mercy.  He will not always strive
with us,
Nor will He keep
His anger forever.

 

Our worship of the LORD should be with a gracious heart and merciful heart which has learned the art of forgetfulness, but also the art of remembrance.

 

The grace of forgetfulness is toward those who have injured us.  God not only forgives, but He forgets.  If we are to access the grace of the treasures of heaven, through prayer and thanksgiving, then we must both forgive and forget.  When we are yielded in worship and thanksgiving, God’s great grace of forgetfulness is merged with our hearts and we are also able to forget.

 

While there are many things which we ought to bury in the depths of God’s forgetfulness, there is much, on the other hand, that we ought to keep in perpetual remembrance. 

 

Let us remember God’s innumerable benefits.  His goodness and mercy has followed us all the days of our life from our first breath until the present hour.   He is ever mindful of His beloved by day and night, at home and abroad, in health and sickness.  He has delivered us from our fears and blessed us far above our utmost expectations.

 

Psalm 103:10 -14: He has not dealt with us according to our sins,
Nor punished us according to our iniquities. For as the heavens are high above the earth,
so great is His mercy toward those who fear Him;

As far as the east is from the west,
So far has He removed our transgressions from us.

 As a father pities his children,
So the LORD pities those who fear Him.

For He knows our frame;
He remembers that we
are dust.

 (wayward family, gentle father)

Since the LORD has forgiven us for so much and continues to show us mercy, grace, and forgiveness, who are we that we should not forgive one another.

Unchecked Copy BoxMatthew 6:14 -15: For if you forgive men their trespasses, you’re heavenly Father will also forgive you.-But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses

 

Psalm 103:15-18: As for man, his days are like grass;
As a flower of the field, so he flourishes. For the wind passes over it, and it is gone, And its place remembers it no more. But the mercy of the L
ORD is from everlasting to everlasting on those who fear Him,
And His righteousness to children’s children,

To such as keep His covenant,
And to those who remember His commandments to do them
.

 (Fading life, eternal love)

When I was visiting my mother this week, she sung over and over a stanza from the song, “Life is like a mountain railroad.”  I felt like she was giving me a message, not only of her life, but almost a goodbye; and perhaps a blessing.

M.E.Abbey-C.D.Tillman)

Life is like a mountain railroad
With an engineer that's brave
We must make the run successful
From the cradle to the grave.

Watch the curves, the fills, and tunnels
Never falter, never fail
Keep your hand upon the throttle
And your eyes upon the rail.

Blessed Savior, Thou will guide us
Till we reach that blissful shore
Where the angels wait to join us
In that great forevermore.

As you roll across the trestle
Spanning Jordon's swelling tide
You'll behold the Union Depot
Into which your train will glide.

There you'll meet the superintendent
God the Father, God the Son
With a hearty joyous greetings:
"Weary Pilgrims Welcome Home..."

Psalm 103:19 -22: The LORD has established His throne in heaven,
And His kingdom rules over all.  Bless the L
ORD, you His angels. Who excel in strength, who do His word,
Heeding the voice of His word. Bless the L
ORD, all you His hosts,
You ministers of His, who do His pleasure.

Unchecked Copy BoxBless the LORD, all His works,
In all places of His dominion.

 

 

John Pulsford:  “The praise of God ascends and descends from the heights to the depths and back again.  The universe is vocal with the glory of God.  The joy of the Lord becomes unspeakable and full of glory---exultation which knows no bounds.  Every creature is magnetized by it and drawn into the chorus.  Heaven is full of praise, and earth is full of praise, and praise rises from the earth.  Everything that has breath joins in the rapture.  God is encompassed by a loving, praising creation.  Man the last in creation, but the first in song, knows not how to contain himself.  He dances, he sings, he commands all the heavens, with all their angels, to help him; beasts and all cattle, creeping things and flying fowl must do likewise, and all deeps must yield contributions.  He presses even inanimate things into service---worshipping God and makes His praise glorious.”

 

We thrill to this vivid picture of universal worship, when our beloved Lord shall be praised on earth as He is praised in heaven.  But our joy turns to sorrow and chagrin as we realize that our world, instead of being filled with the praise of God, is tumultuous with enmity, blasphemy and cursing.  What a clamor it sends up into the heavens!  The cries of the afflicted,  the shouts of the cruel, the shrieks of the tortured, the harsh words of passionate men, the deception of the words of the media, continual blasphemy---all these blend into a horrible cacophony of dispraise unto the Creator.

 

How terrible that God should be skillfully blasphemed in our culture, but not skillfully praised!

 

How terrible that our movies, televisions and media are praised without shame for blasphemy of God.

 

Yes, by His Spirit, He is everywhere present in the entire universe, and the emanations of His life and power reach out to the uttermost extent of His domain. 

 

God’s direct presence and His Shekinah glory are manifested on earth when His people provide for Him an atmosphere of pure and fervent praise.  Our God lives and moves in the midst of Praise.

 

God has formed us for His praise, and as we truly worship we are raised to our highest degree of communion and awareness of Him.  Praise is ennobling, elevating, energizing, and even creative---for as we praise we behold Him, and as we behold Him we are changed into the same image.

 

 

We can doubt and find fault, turn back and limit the Holy One of Israel, yes, and even provoke Him (Ps. 78:40-41).  Or, we can take the Kingdom way rejoicing and singing as we journey toward the Holy Hill.  Then shall the wilderness blossom before us like a rose and re-echo with songs of praise.  Even in the valley of Baca (weeping) we shall find a well of joy.  But we must make the choice between the way of unbelief and the way of triumphant faith. 

 

Can rejoicing keep company with complaining?  Will fretting and trusting journey together?  What part has rebellion with praise? 

 

The everlasting praises of the Eternal One mount up into heaven; they go down into the depths.  He that dwells in the heights shall hear it and be glad.  He takes sweet refuge in the mountains of His praise.  These habitations of praise, these spiritual skyscrapers of glorification are His desired haven.  Praise Him in the heights.  Magnify Him in the depths!  Earth and heaven, make His praise glorious!

 

There is a divine secret in the high praise of God.  It releases His power.  Praise resembles helium, causing us to rise above the earth.  It also enables us to parachute His power to far distant lands.  It is a secret weapon and no man knows what may be accomplished by practicing the praise of the Living and only true God.

 

The Beloved languishes and thirsts for your praise.  What I say, I say unto you all, “Praise!’  Lift up your voice with strength, be not afraid; span heaven and earth with a triumphant bridge of His praises.  Tunnel through the rocks, make paths through the seas; irrigate the arid wastes.

 

Carolyn Sissom, Pastor

Eastgate Ministries Church

www.eastgateministries.com

I entered into the labors of Ladies of Gold – sermons by Francis Metcalfe under the section: Living The Life of Praise.  Westbow Press, 1663 Liberty Drive, Bloomington, In. 47403; sermons: Ceaseless Praise by Pastor Sissom 4/23/19 – and In Christ We Have All Things - 11/22/14. 

 
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