You have heard of the man who made such a notable change of residence, from “Grumble Corner” to “Thanksgiving Street,” that the result was, his friends scarcely knew him, for—
“His face had lost the look of care,
And the ugly frown it used to wear.”
Without presuming that a need exists for any of my dear readers to remove from their present habitation, it is laid on my heart to remind them of the joy of thanksgiving, and to say, “O magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt His Name together!” What a God-honoring employment it is, to “offer the sacrifice of praise continually!” We are constantly praying for one thing or another, often selfishly spending our breath in a long catalogue of our own needs and desires; but our thanks to our gracious God are soon told out, and our praises form but a small part of our devotions.
This is not as it should be—and not as God would have it. To enrobe ourselves daily in “the garment of praise,” is not only to secure our own happiness, but to fulfill the blessed service of “glorifying God.” Prayer is good, but praise is better. Praise is—prayer in richest fruitfulness, prayer in highest spirituality, prayer in nearest approach to Heaven. Prayer is the language of earth, praise is the native-tongue of the angels. Gratitude to God is not cultivated in our lips and lives, as it ought to be. Each moment of mercy should strike a note of praise as it passes, and then our days would be one long-continued psalm. Praise has power to lift the soul above all care as if on wings.
Sometimes, when we feel cold and lifeless, and supplications languish on our tongues, a prelude of praise will awaken the heart’s inmost music, and move it to pour forth its tenderest melody. We are too prone to take our daily blessings and mercies as rights, instead of receiving them as undeserved gifts of “free grace and dying love,” and then returning to our gracious God the full measure of loving gratitude of which our poor hearts are capable. If, in looking back but a day, we fail to count the loving-kindnesses with which its minutes have been laden, how must the retrospect of a lifetime overwhelm us with its weight of indebtedness to the Lord, and also, alas! with a sense of our guilty unmindfulness of “all His benefits!” ~by Susannah Spurgeon (written after the death of her beloved husband, C. H. Spurgeon)