How Great Thou Art
Here I am, Father, ready to do Your will. I will not withhold myself from You this day.
Read Psalm 66:1-20
For the director of music. A song. A psalm.
Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
“It is in the process of being worshiped that God communicates his presence” (C.S. Lewis).
The greatness and majesty of God form the dominant theme of this psalm; however, it is not the greatness of someone distant and unknowable. God’s greatness is seen through what he has done. Acts such as drying up the waters, ruling the nations, being present in time of trouble, highlight his majesty and power. Some of these events were past history, but the psalmist also praises God for personal blessings. It is wonderful to think that this great Creator is interested in each of our lives, hears our prayers (19) and blesses us personally with his love (20).
This psalm is an invitation to praise God and stand in awe of him. Nations that have worshiped other gods and have become proud and arrogant cringe before him. A contrast is made between his enemies and those who fear him. While enemies cringe, those who respect the Lord have their prayers answered. The psalmist recognizes that it is often in times of trouble that we cry most fervently to God. He made vows during troubled times and now wants to fulfill them (13). Clearly, there is an absolute conviction that God has answered prayer. We all pass through troubled times, but those who have faith in God often testify that they experience God’s help and presence through every kind of trouble.
We aren’t told what the psalmist’s trouble was but the experiences of hard times had not lessened his faith in God. Through the darkness, God had been there and in the end he always brings his people to a “place of abundance” (12). God has not changed and the one who sustained the psalmist through the hard times can sustain you and me, also.
Grateful testimony is often a means used by God to strengthen the faith of others. Pray for an opportunity to share God’s care for you with someone.
Gracious Father, I praise You for Your timely interventions in my life. In You, as the hymn says, I am, “… ransomed, healed, restored, forgiven.” I bless Your Name.
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