“Give praise to the Lord, proclaim His name..."

Reflections by Annette Roux, Retired Pastoral Associate

“Give praise to the Lord, proclaim His name; make known among the nations what He has done.” Isaiah 122:4

In the seventeenth century, Martin Rinkart served as a clergyman in Saxony, Germany, for more than 30 years during times of war and plague. One year he conducted more than 4,000 funerals, including his wife’s, and at times food was so scarce that his family went hungry. Although he could have despaired, his faith in God remained strong and he gave thanks continually. In fact, he poured his gratitude into “Nun danket alle Gott,” the song that became the well-loved English hymn, “Now Thank We All Our God.” Rinkart followed the example of the prophet Isaiah, who instructed God’s people to give thanks at all times including when they’d disappointed God or when enemies oppressed them. Even then they were to exalt God’s name, making known among the nations what He had done. We might give thanks easily during celebrations like Thanksgiving when we’re enjoying an abundant feast with friends and family. But can we express our gratitude to God in difficult times, such as when we’re missing someone from our table or when we’re struggling with our finances or when we’re locked in conflict with one close to us? Let’s echo Pastor Rinkart, joining hearts and voices as we give praise to the eternal God, whom earth and Heaven adore. We can “sing to the Lord, for He has done wondrous things.”

Meditation: In times of hardship, how do you turn to thanksgiving and praise?  What role does God through His Holy Spirit play in this?

Prayer: God, I thank you for Your amazing work in my life. You love me unendingly, more than I can ever express.  Amen