Daily Devotional February 25th
“I will sing to the LORD as long as I live. I will praise my God to my last breath! May all my thoughts be pleasing to him, for I rejoice in the LORD.” (Psalm 104:33-34)
Reading through the Psalms again, it is easy to skim over the psalmists’ words as they often waver between effusive praise of God and His gracious work to anxious filled sentiments pleading for rescue from enemies; however, one phrase caught my attention this morning, “May all my thoughts be pleasing to him.” David’s concern is not simply for an ability not to slip up in his words and actions in an unguarded moment. His desire is to have a thought-life that pleases God as well. Far easier said than done.
Sure, it’s easy to have good and pleasing thoughts when all is going well, but what of times when all is not going according to plan? Take this scenario for instance…You’re exhausted, but your brain refuses to shut down, so rather than drifting off into a sound sleep you find yourself waking repeatedly through the night. The next morning, you have to wait too long for your turn in the bathroom, the toast burns and you discover you’re out of coffee. You’re late for school or work and every street light seems determined to slow you down. You forget your facemask (yet again) and have to find another before you can enter the building. Only then to find out that a classmate or co-worker has not completed their portion of an assignment or task for your group project that is to be presented later in the day. You may have managed to keep from saying anything that you may later regret, but how’s your thought life? Still pleasing to God?
A God-pleasing thought life is definitely a goal to strive for, but it is not something that we just wake up and *presto* all our thoughts will now never go awry. We need to continually put our focus on things that are worthy of our time and attention and refuse to dwell on things that drag down rather than lift up our thought processes. Philippians 4:6-8 serves as a great reminder, “Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus. And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.” Pray instead of worry. Let God know what you need. Express gratitude. Allow His peace to infuse your day. Deliberately fill your mind with God-pleasing thoughts. All of these require us to intentionally focus our attention on God and our relationship with Him; we need to actively refuse to allow worry, anxiety, impatience and ingratitude to drag us down the paths that lead to dark places in our minds.
Even if today has begun a little on the rough side, it is not too late to turn it around. Ask God to help you flip the switch. Might I suggest that a good place to begin is to write down some of the things you are truly thankful for and then focus your attention on those. Let’s all work on allowing God to transform our thoughts into God-pleasing ones, even when things do not go as planned.
~ Pastor Jane
First licensed for pastoral ministry in 1994, Pastor Jane Peck has served in camp and church ministries in three denominations, five provinces and in a variety of roles. Her most recent position is that of Pastor at Hope Chapel which she began in 2020. She is excited to see what God can and will do in the days to come!