COLLINS COLUMN: Songs of Gratitude by Asaph

Published 10:00 am Wednesday, June 19, 2024

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David’s go-to worship leader was Asaph. I am oversimplifying, but Asaph had about a dozen worship songs that are credited to his name in the book of Psalms. In today’s terms, maybe these psalms would be all on his worship CD that sold millions of copies. The truth is they have sold millions of copies! Back in my day as a worship leader, there was a worship CD called “Enter the Worship Circle.” I often led worship with songs that came from Psalm 50, which is the psalm that is shouting at me this morning as I write.

 Asaph opened his psalm with a powerful reminder of who God is and what he does every day:

 “The Mighty One, God the Lord, speaks and summons the earth from the rising of the sun to its setting.”

 The God of all creation brings forth every new day and then brings it to its divine conclusion each evening. Our God loves us so much that he orchestrates not just our lives each day but speaks life over every person and over all his creation day by day!

 The psalm continues with the reminder that the heavens declare God’s righteousness and that God is the judge who will judge all things. We have a righteous judge, and we do not need to fear his judgement because of Jesus and what he did on the cross to pay the penalty of our sins!

 Asaph also reminds us of something obvious that we sometimes forget: God doesn’t need our money, our stuff, or anything from us. He is all sufficient. What could we possibly give to the one who created the world and sustains it? He doesn’t need our advice, and whatever your accumulated wealth, it is not even an eyelash size compared to all the riches God possesses. Here is how the psalmist records God’s thoughts on resources:

“For every beast of the forest is mine, the cattle on a thousand hills. I know all the birds of the hills, and all that moves in the field is mine. If I were hungry, I would not tell you, for the world and its fullness are mine.”

So, what is it that God does want from us?

1) Offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiving (v. 14). God desires our gratitude for who he is and what he has done for us through the gift of his son Jesus.

2) God wants us to call out to him in our day of trouble (V 15). “And call upon me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you shall glorify me.”

When Jesus met with his disciples ahead of his death on the cross, he told them and us that in this world we would have trouble but take heart. He has overcome the world! When we consider the offer from Psalm 50:15 alongside the promise of John 16:33, we can give a huge shout out to God in praise and thanksgiving. Whenever we face trouble, God wants us to cry out to him so that we can see him once again deliver us. Our absolute dependence on God brings glory to Him.

I don’t know about you, but I will admit to often moaning and complaining about one more trouble that comes into my life. Some days it is little nagging troubles and some days the troubles seem to be so big I can’t imagine how to get past them. But Asaph and Jesus are united in giving us this promise: Christ has overcome the world, and he can handle every trouble we bring to him.

God, forgive us for the waste of our breath and our time when we choose to complain and grumble about the challenges of the day. Today, we remember that we can, and you want us to, cry out to you in all of our troubles so that you can deliver us. We thank you for who you are and for promising to hear us and save us. In Jesus’ name, amen.