Am I the only one who has more passwords than good sense?
Everybody or everything demands a password or a code. And woe be unto you if you’ve forgotten your password. You jump through a labyrinth of hoops to get a new password, which you’ll probably forget just as soon as you get off the site.
And the password fairies turn up their nose at a password you can remember. Ever get a message like this, “Would you like Google to generate a password for you?” zxy93@#314xxxza43ooonb43xx#$.
“Put this password in a safe place where it can’t be stolen. No, idiot, not on your computer. Don’t you know that Russians and Nigerians can send little bugs into your computer which crawl around and steal your password? It could be the end of your life as you know it. Memorize it!”
“Memorize it!” you want shout back at the password fairy. “Do you have any idea of the advanced state of decomposition of my brain? Do you realize that I have nine hundred jillion other passwords in there … somewhere? If I could just remember them.”
If you don’t do it, though, the Russians or the Nigerians will hack your computer and you’ll be sorry. I wonder what it was that the Russians and Nigerians did to make a living before Internet.
Passwords! (Scream, scream, scream).
God Has a Password?
So, suspicious little bells ding when you find this in the Message paraphrase of Psalm 100:4 :
“Enter with the password: ‘Thank you!’
Make yourselves at home, talking praise.
Thank him. Worship him.”
I know Eugene Peterson speaks metaphorically here in his paraphrase of Psalm 100, but not another password please! And to get into God’s presence no less. You know what, though? I think I can remember this password. “Thank you!”
I’m learning that if my heart bubbles with thanksgiving, my life perks up like a dry flowerbed after a rain shower. It’s the key to entering God’s presence and that abundant life He has for me.
An entitled heart badgers God. “You said it, so where’s my answer? We’re Christians. We trust in the Lord Jesus. So, He’s got to do everything we ask Him to.”
If God doesn’t do what we want, as fast as we want Him to do it, we pout and walk around with a face usually associated with those who suck on lemons. Unhappy. Mad. Frustrated. Disappointed.
We don’t quit because we possess enough faith to know that eternity is real and we don’t want to end up where we don’t want to end up at. But, the facial expression that springs from our inner condition is not pretty.
Hey, come here my friend. Yes, you. Come over here. You want to know how to enter God’s presence? Listen as I whisper in your ear, (“The password is ‘thank-you.’)
Reasons To Say “Thanks”
Look around you. You’re breathing God’s air, eating His food and drinking his water (or diet Coke). Check out the incredible vastness of the night sky. He made it and you can enjoy it. But, if you really want to enjoy it, say “Thank You Father!”
God gave the best He had so that you could be saved from the consequences of your sin. You have—or can have–eternal life in His Son Jesus. Don’t forget the password.
Life doesn’t always go as we wish it would. We live in a fallen world. This ain’t heaven, yet. If we would just open our eyes we’d see INCREDIBLE blessings, both humongous and microscopic.
The beauty of the Swiss Alps stole the breath of an American friend the first time he saw them. He asked a local farmer how he kept the wonder of those mountains alive, because the man saw them all the time.
The fellow responded that he didn’t permit the sight become ordinary.
And that is it, isn’t it? We act intentionally to constantly see God’s goodness to us. We’re surrounded with His glory, His provision, His love. We can choose to be a grouch and our entitled heart will fume because it doesn’t have something it wants. We figure that God is our servant and if we pray, He has to hop to it.
Homework To Grow
We might get better “service” if we were thankful for what we already have, huh? At the end of the day, though, He loves me (and you) with an eternal love. I exist for Him. He doesn’t exist for me.
You’ve got homework this week. I want you to stop three times a day for the next seven days. Come to a full stop. Think of something you are thankful for—a tiny something or a big something. Just say, “Thank You,” to the Lord.
That the password. It gets you in the door.
“Shout with joy to the Lord, all the earth!
Worship the Lord with gladness.
Come before him, singing with joy.
Acknowledge that the Lord is God!
He made us, and we are his.
We are his people, the sheep of his pasture.
Enter his gates with thanksgiving;
go into his courts with praise.
Give thanks to him and praise his name.
For the Lord is good.
His unfailing love continues forever,
and his faithfulness continues to each generation.”
(Psalm 100 NLT)
I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought, and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder. – G.K. Chesterton