Giving Thanks to our Maker and Shepherd

| By on The President's Notebook

Two of my favorite thanksgiving passages are Psalm 100 and the first half of Psalm 95 (see below). I memorized them as a younger Christian and the phrases have rung through my head for years. Psalm 95 speaks of the majesty of our Maker and his sovereignty over all creation. Although to our modern ears, phrases like “depths of the earth” and “mountain peaks” sound like mere geographical features, to the ancients they would have signaled the extent of all creation—the heavens, the earth, and under the earth, from top to bottom and from seas to land. We too are part of this creation and owe all our worship to our sovereign Maker.

Psalm 100 has a different emphasis. The Lord who made us is shown here as the One who also knows and loves us as his covenant children.  We are his people, cared for him as a shepherd cares for sheep. And so we praise God not only for his sovereign glory but for his lovingkindness; his faithful love through the decades of our own lives and through all generations of his people.

How have you seen God’s faithful, enduring love in your own life this past year?  During times of sorrow and difficulty, it can look different or be harder to see.  But as the months and years go by, I can look back and see how the loving hand of the Shepherd was with me all along.  

My church is celebrating its 100th anniversary and our theme song is by Greg Scheer:

“One generation will call to the next:

Our God is good and his hand is strong!”  

Whether young or old, a new Christian or a longtime believer, we proclaim to each other that we have seen his love and we have known his goodness. We hope you’ll join with the BioLogos staff and community in reflecting on God’s faithfulness and expressing thanks to him this Thanksgiving Day.

Here are the passages if you would like to read, sing, or share them as you give thanks to our Maker and our Shepherd.

Psalm 95:1-6

1 Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord;

   let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation.

2 Let us come before him with thanksgiving

   and extol him with music and song.

3 For the Lord is the great God,

   the great King above all gods.

4 In his hand are the depths of the earth,

   and the mountain peaks belong to him.

5 The sea is his, for he made it,

   and his hands formed the dry land.

6 Come, let us bow down in worship,

   let us kneel before the Lord our Maker.

Psalm 100

1 Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth.

2  Worship the Lord with gladness;

   come before him with joyful songs.

3 Know that the Lord is God.

   It is he who made us, and we are his;

   we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.

4 Enter his gates with thanksgiving

   and his courts with praise;

   give thanks to him and praise his name.

5 For the Lord is good and his love endures forever;

   his faithfulness continues through all generations.

 

Notes

Citations

MLA

Haarsma, Deborah. "Giving Thanks to our Maker and Shepherd"
https://biologos.org/. N.p., 25 Nov. 2015. Web. 22 November 2017.

APA

Haarsma, D. (2015, November 25). Giving Thanks to our Maker and Shepherd
Retrieved November 22, 2017, from /blogs/deborah-haarsma-the-presidents-notebook/giving-thanks-to-our-maker-and-shepherd

About the Author

Deborah Haarsma

Deborah Haarsma serves as the President of BioLogos, a position she has held since January 2013. Previously, she served as professor and chair in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Gifted in interpreting complex scientific topics for lay audiences, Dr. Haarsma often speaks to churches, colleges, and schools about the relationships between science and Christian faith. She is author (along with her husband Loren Haarsma) of Origins: Christian Perspectives on Creation, Evolution, and Intelligent Design (2011, 2007), a book presenting the agreements and disagreements of Christians regarding the history of life and the universe. Haarsma is an experienced research scientist, with several publications in the Astrophysical Journal and the Astronomical Journal on extragalactic astronomy and cosmology.

More posts by Deborah Haarsma

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