Ellen G. White Writings

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The Review and Herald

May 7, 1908

Praising the Lord

Mrs. E. G. White

When a sense of the loving-kindness of God is constantly refreshing the soul, it will be revealed in the countenance by an expression of peace and joy. It will be manifest in the words and works. And the generous, holy spirit of Christ, working upon the heart, will yield in the life a converting influence upon others.

“I will mention the loving-kindness of the Lord,” the prophet Isaiah declared, “according to all that the Lord hath bestowed on us, and the great goodness toward the house of Israel, which he hath bestowed on them according to his mercies, and according to the multitude of his loving-kindnesses. For he said, Surely they are my people, children that will not lie: so he was their Saviour. In all their affliction he was afflicted, and the angel of his presence saved them: in his love and in his pity he redeemed them; and he bare them, and carried them all the days of old.”

Have we not reason to talk of God's goodness, and to tell of his power? When friends are kind to us, we esteem it a privilege to thank them for their kindness. How much more should we count it a joy to return thanks to the Friend who has given us every good and perfect gift. Then let us, in every church, cultivate thanksgiving to God. Let us educate our lips to praise God in the family circle. Let us teach our children to offer praise and thanksgiving to God. Let our gifts and offerings declare our gratitude for the favors we daily receive. In everything we should show forth the joy of the Lord, and make known the message of God's saving grace.

In the second chapter of 1 Samuel (1 Samuel 2:1) is recorded the prayer of a consecrated woman who served and glorified God. She prayed: “My heart rejoiceth in the Lord, mine horn is exalted in the Lord: my mouth is enlarged over mine enemies; because I rejoice in thy salvation. There is none holy as the Lord: for there is none beside thee: neither is there any rock like our God.” Hannah's offering of thanksgiving for the answer to her prayer is a lesson to those who today receive answers to their requests. Do we not neglect to return praise and thanksgiving to God for his loving-kindness?

David declares, “I love the Lord, because he hath heard my voice and my supplications. Because he hath inclined his ear unto me, therefore will I call upon him as long as I live.” God's goodness in hearing and answering prayer places us under heavy obligation to express our thanksgiving for the favors bestowed upon us. We should praise God much more than we do. The blessings received in answer to prayer should be promptly acknowledged. The record of them should be placed in our diary, that when we take the book in hand, we may remember the goodness of the Lord, and praise his holy name.

We grieve the spirit of Christ by our complaints and murmurings and repinings. We should not dishonor God by the mournful relation of trials that appear grievous. All trials that are received as educators will produce joy. The whole religious life will be uplifting, elevating, ennobling, fragrant with good words and works. The enemy is well pleased to have souls depressed, downcast, mourning, and groaning; he wants such impressions made as to the effect of our faith. But God designs that the mind shall take no low level. He desires every soul to triumph in the keeping power of the Redeemer. The psalmist says: “Give unto the Lord, O ye mighty, give unto the Lord glory and strength. Give unto the Lord the glory due unto his name; worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness.” “I will extol thee, O Lord; for thou hast lifted me up, and hast not made my foes to rejoice over me. O Lord my God, I cried unto thee, and thou hast healed me.... Sing unto the Lord, O ye saints of his. Give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness.”

It is Satan's work to talk of that which concerns himself, and he is delighted to have human beings talk of his power, and of his workings through the children of men. Through indulgence in such conversation the mind becomes gloomy and sour and disagreeable. We may become channels of communication for Satan, through which words flow that bring no sunshine to any heart. But let us decide that this shall not be. If we look constantly to Jesus and become daily learners of him, we shall become like him in character. His teachings, faithfully followed, will qualify us for membership in the heavenly family. Then let us learn to put away all in us that is unlovely, and seek to become the true children of God.

All heaven is interested in our salvation. The angels of God, thousands upon thousands, and ten thousand times ten thousand, are commissioned to minister to them that shall be heirs of salvation. They guard us against evil, and press back the powers of darkness that are seeking our destruction. Have we not reason to be thankful every moment, thankful even when there are apparent difficulties in our pathway?

The Lord himself is our helper. “Sing, O daughter of Zion; shout, O Israel; be glad and rejoice with all the heart, O daughter of Jerusalem.... The Lord thy God in the midst of thee is mighty; he will save, he will rejoice over thee with joy; he will rest in his love; he will joy over thee with singing.” This is the testimony that the Lord desires us to bear to the world. His praise shall continually be in our hearts and upon our lips.

The psalmist exclaims, “O give thanks unto the Lord, for he is good: for his mercy endureth forever. Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, whom he hath redeemed from the hand of the enemy; and gathered out of the lands, from the east, and from the west, from the north, and from the south. They wandered in the wilderness in a solitary way; they found no city to dwell in. Hungry and thirsty, their soul fainted in them. Then they cried unto the Lord in their trouble, and he delivered them out of their distresses. And he led them forth by the right way, that they might go to a city of habitation. O that men would praise the Lord for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men!”

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