The key to having speech which matches up with a life that expresses thanks is an understanding that thankfulness must be first given to God. Psalm 9:1-2 says, “I will praise you, O LORD, with all my heart; I will tell of all your wonders. I will be glad and rejoice in You; I will sing praise to Your name, O Most High.” David, the writer of this Psalm excites and engages himself to praise God for His mercies and the great things He had done for him and the government he oversaw with the Lord. If these expressions are found in David, a man after God’s own heart (Acts 13:22) then they will be found in the Holy Spirit Illuminated child of God.
The whole of Scripture teaches us, God expects suitable returns of praise from those for whom He has done marvelous works. (Luke 17:11-17) If we choose to give praise to God acceptably, then we must praise Him in sincerity, not only with lips, but from a life directed from a heart of praise. Holy joy is the life of thankful praise, as thankful praise is the language of Holy joy. Whatever occurs to make us glad, our joy must go past the circumstance or object, and be in Him who gave it.
We are joyful not because of good health, but because the Great Physician has given it to us. We are not joyful because of our nice homes, but because the Lord who provides has given us our homes, cars, jobs, ability to make money, and our success. If we are being afflicted in any way, we are not joyful because of the affliction, but through the affliction we are given the opportunity to express trust and enabled to live a life of praise to Him, no matter what may come our way.
Christians are to thank God first and foremost because of His Holy Spirit’s empowerment which daily affects the spiritual heart of born again Christians, causing them to no longer desire fleshly control, worldly drawings and devilish lies. Our God’s sovereignty not only offers heavenly promises but also intervenes for us in the earthly realm, thus, He deserves praise first and utmost.
When God has shown Himself to be above the enemies of the church we must take occasion to give glory to Him. This heart of thankfulness opens the door of mercy, enables us to enjoy God’s goodness and prepares our spiritual hearts to be aware of all the blessings God has given us. Say thanks to God First!