Do you underline things in your Bible? I do. I want the ones reading behind me (hopefully my grandchildren) to see what I saw and be encouraged to make their own discoveries like I did with my grandfather’s and my mother’s Bibles.
The best thing about Scripture is that it can be personal for everyone. Each of us can read the same passage and gain unique insights based on our own distinctive experiences. As we read through the Bible year after year, we have the opportunity to gain fresh wisdom every trip through. For that, I am most thankful.
This Thanksgiving week I keep returning to Psalm 116. Like no other chapter, every single word of it is underlined in my Bible. No other passage declares so perfectly the love God and I have for one another. As you read this version of it from The Passion Translation, I hope it brings back personal memories of God’s goodness. Let’s be extra intentional about being extra thankful this year.
“I am passionately in love with God because he listens to me.
He hears my prayers and answers them.
As long as I live I’ll keep praying to him,
for he stoops down to listen to my heart’s cry.
Death once stared me in the face,
and I was close to slipping into its dark shadows.
I was terrified and overcome with sorrow.
I cried out to the Lord, “God, come and save me!”
He was so kind, so gracious to me.
Because of his passion toward me,
he made everything right and he restored me.
So I’ve learned from my experience
that God protects the vulnerable.
For I was broken and brought low,
but he answered me and came to my rescue!
Now I can say to myself and to all,
‘Relax and rest, be confident and serene,
for the Lord rewards fully those who simply trust in him.’
God has rescued my soul from death’s fear
and dried my eyes of many tears.
He’s kept my feet firmly on his path
and strengthened me so that I may please him
and walk before Yahweh in his fields of life.
Even when it seems I’m surrounded
by many liars and my own fears,
and though I’m hurting in my suffering and trauma,
I still stay faithful to God and speak words of faith.
So now, what can I ever give back to God
to repay him for the blessings he’s poured out on me?
I will lift up his cup of salvation and praise him extravagantly
for all that he’s done for me.
I will fulfill the promise I made to God
in the presence of his gathered people.
When one of God’s holy lovers dies,
it is costly to the Lord, touching his heart.
Lord, because I am your loving servant,
Now I’ll worship you passionately and bring to you
my sacrifice of praise, drenched with thanksgiving!
I’ll keep my promise to you, God,
in the presence of your gathered people, just like I said I would.
I will worship you here in your living presence,
in the temple in Jerusalem.
I will worship and sing hallelujah, for I praise you, Lord!”
Psalm 116, TPT
God loves you too! Go ahead – sing your new hallelujah song! Happy Thanksgiving!