Ankyloglossia is the Greek term for “stiff-tongue.” It is a medical condition that a person is born with and can affect their ability to take nourishment, as well as impact speech as a child develops.
At times when I try to express my thanksgiving and praise to God, I feel like I have a “stiff tongue.” So, as you know from previous blog posts, this January I began a journey to learn from the Word of God how to express my thanksgiving and praise to Him. I have invited you on this journey.
The learning curve is high. I am discovering direction from God in His word for what to praise him and even what to say as we saw in Psalm 66:3. Here the Spirit literally tells us what to say.
- “Say to God, “How awesome are your deeds! How great is your power that your enemies cringe before You.”
As the Spirit reveals in the Word the what and the how about expressing thanks to God, I am also learning about the Who. I am seeing God, His character; who He is; how He thinks about me (us), and how He interacts with us.
Thank You for Your Faithfulness
In my search for how to more adequately express my thanks and praise to God I learn from David in Psalm 138:2 that he advocates thanking and praising God for His faithfulness.
- “I will bow down toward your holy temple and will praise your name for your unfailing love and your faithfulness.”
As we follow the psalmist’s lead and praise God for his faithfulness it opens a door for us the see God and to know Him as faithful to us.
Deuteronomy 7:9 makes a clear statement about the nature and character of God as being faithful.
- “Know therefore that the LORD your God is God; He is the faithful God, keeping his covenant of love to a thousand generations of those who love him and keep his commandments.”
In Acts 2:38-39, we see the fulfillment pf this promise unto us and generations after us.
- Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far off (generations to come), everyone whom the Lord our God calls to himself.”
Lean On Him
In Deuteronomy 7:9 God is identified as the faithful God. The word for faithful in that text is “aman” meaning confirming, supporting, reliable. The faithful one is the one who sustains, carries, nurtures, supports and builds up. The faithful one is trustworthy and can be leaned on. The faithful one is consistent in being true and right.
God, as the Faithful One is consistent in daily applying His love, mercy grace and care for us. In Lamentations 3:22-23, Jeremiah describes this faithfulness as emanating from God’s devotion to us.
- “Because of the loving devotion of the LORD we are not consumed, for His mercies never fail. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness!”
This truth about the faithful nature of God sounds a resounding chord of hope within me. It assures me that God is faithful to be forgiving and merciful to me every day.
I can lean on this truth when that accusatory voice sounds within me, reciting all the ways I failed, all the ways I missed the mark. That voice that reverberates with echoes of “you are not worthy; you are not good enough; yet again you messed up.” It is that voice shaded in darkness that we all hear.
But, knowing that God is faithful, that He is consistent in His love and grace to us and that I can lean on Him for support in my weakness leads me to life, hope and faith. That hope explodes in praise to God for His faithfulness to me.
Facets of Faithfulness
There are many ways that God is faithful to us. As a meditation exercise, read the verses below. Let them speak to you and help connect with God’s faithfulness in your life.
God’s faithfulness is a protection.
- “He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.” Ps. 91:4
God’s faithfulness is eternal.
- “Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise; give thanks to Him and bless His name. For the LORD is good; his steadfast love endures forever, and his faithfulness to all generations.” Ps. 100:4-5
God’s work is done in faithfulness.
- “For the word of the LORD is upright, and all his work is done in faithfulness. 33:4”
We see God is faithful in His work of salvation to us . This truth of God’s devoted faithfulness is attested to in 1 Corinthians 1:8-9.
- “He will sustain you to the end, so that you will be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. God, who has called you into fellowship with His Son Jesus Christ our Lord, is faithful.”
The Faithful One is with us in the hard times.
When I am going through hard times it is difficult for me to see God’s faithfulness. Sometimes, in the fog of hurt and pain, I have to hold onto the truth of the scripture by making a choice to believe He is there. There are many promises of God’s faithfulness to us. Here are a few, add some of your favorite ones.
- “No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.” 1 Corinthians 10:13
- “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in times of trouble.” Ps. 46:1
- “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will not fear for You are with me.” Ps. 23:4
Look for Faithfulness
Sometimes the stress and difficulties of life obscure God’s faithfulness to me. It is easy for me to recall the most wondrous act of God’s faithfulness in fulfilling His promise to send His Son to save us and to draw us into His presence.
I can trace this persistent faithfulness of God through the Old Testament and New Testament and into my life today. But seeing His faithfulness as I walk through the events and relationships of my daily life takes an intentional focus.
The other day I was struggling with being hurt by a relationship that I have. Even after various steps of reconciliation, difficulties remained. I began to focus on the hurt, my thoughts produced fear and lack of peace and trust in God.
I began to look for God’s faithfulness to me in this. I prayed for God to comfort me, to renew my thinking and faith about how He was feeling about me. Later that day I was listening to a spiritual song and it was like God himself encouraging me, reminding me of His grace and love for me.
Also, later that day I received an email from the person who is mediating this difficulty. In this email she communicated her love and acceptance for me. These were glimpses of God’s faithfulness to me.
Be intentional about seeing God’s faithfulness in your life.
- Pray and ask God to show you, to open your eyes to see His faithfulness and open your ears to hear it.
- Find a scripture that speaks God’s faithfulness to you. Read it as you ask God to help you see how it connects to you.
- Make a mental picture of you in this faithfulness scripture. Mine is Ps. 23:4. In that picture I see myself a lamb walking through a shadowy valley, but I am at the side of the Good Shepherd, leaning into His leg. He has His staff in His right hand and every now and then He puts His hand on my head or back to reassure me that He is there.
- Take time to think about all the ways God has shown His faithfulness to you.
- Write them down, and then thank God for each one.
This is so refreshing. It helps me focus on the God who is faithful to me and will not let me flounder. Lory points out that He is the one I can depend upon when there are so many moving parts that I cannot anticipate a solution.