I hope the percentages are better with us but sometimes it sure seems as if nine out of every ten forget all God has done for them as well. How quickly the nine forgot. Here is the real secret though. While the event of these men being healed was a one time event, the thanksgiving for it should be a daily occurrence! Every day we should be thanking God for what pit He dragged us out of! Every morning before our feet hit the floor we should be thanking God for another day and for everything He has already done for us. That is where the power of Christ lies in our lives.
The benefits do not stop there! God crowns us with love and compassion! Do we realize this on a daily basis? Do we even recognize it in our lives? One Bible version says that God "continuously surrounds" us with love and compassion. Everywhere we can see there is the love and compassion of God -- but are we seeking? Are we looking for it? Do we ascribe some of the good things in our life up to chance or luck instead of divine providence? Do we gloss over the good things in our lives as somehow not being enough or heaven forbid -- something we earn or deserve? Sometimes we can develop a negative Godly mindset. When something negative happens in our life we can then go to God and possibly even blame Him. When something positive happens however, we do not even consider the hand of God in it. That is a recipe for an ungrateful heart and that is the perfect ground for the enemy to sow his lies into. You cannot walk in the power of Christ if your natural reaction is to blame God for everything that goes wrong and give Him no credit when things are going right. The world has turned God into a caricature of a grumpy old man hurling lightning bolts down upon us in His disappointment. The reality is He continuously rains compassion and love upon us every single day if we would simply look for it.
The final benefit listed in the key verses is an interesting one to dissect. God satisfies our desires with good things. Wait a minute preacher; are you saying God gives me whatever I want? Not exactly.
Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart. -- Psalm 37: 4 (NIV)
We always want to rush into the part of the verse we like without paying any mind to the qualifier. In this instance, yes God will give you the desires of your heart if you delight yourself in Him. What does that mean? If we would take the time to delight ourselves in the Lord then we would know His will better and we would not find our desires conflicting with His will.
And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them. -- Romans 8: 28 (NLT)
He causes everything to work for our good! Even when the answer is "no." God is not some universal waiter here to bring us whatever we desire. Rather, He wishes to satisfy what it is we want with His perfect and pleasing will. That is how we carry the power we feel at Christmas to our day to day lives. God did not intend for us to stop once every year and dabble in that power but to live it out until He calls us home.
The key verses conclude by saying the result of these two keys -- sincere, in-depth praise and remembering all of His benefits, will result in our youth being renewed like the eagle. The dictionary actually refers to what an eagle is known for - size, strength, and powers of flight and vision. This is the power God intends for us to walk in as Christians. Not some woe-is-me existence wallowing in misery until I can one day enjoy eternal life. No beloved. The eternal life is available today for every believer. The power is there today for all of us. God wants us to grow in our size and our strength -- fed by His Word and sustained through our faith. He wants us to develop the power of Christ inside of us through His Holy Spirit. Powers of developing the vision of God and flight in our lives. God always has a new level for us to fly to. We can always go higher in this walk but we have to be willing to. We have to have a sincere, soul deep praise in our beings for all of the wonderful benefits he provides for us -- now and forever, amen.