“Open to me the gates of righteousness;
I shall enter through them, I shall give thanks to the Lord.
This is the gate of the Lord; The righteous will enter through it.
I shall give thanks to You, for You have answered me,
And You have become my salvation.”
“This is the gate of the Lord.” What is the “this” referring to? We can look at the context which points to entering with thanksgiving. We can cross reference to Psalm 100:4 and see that we are to “Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise.” We are the righteous having been made righteous through Jesus Christ. We can enter into the courts and gates of God’s presence. Yes, we can stand and bow and dance before the very Creator of the universe, the God of the Bible. We do that by entering in with thanksgiving.
Not feeling very thankful? Try listing everything you have to be thankful for, recognize that all good things come from God, and then begin to praise Him for His wonders. Your feelings will come along and soon you will feel like singing praise and thanksgiving.
Sometimes, I find myself entering God’s gates with grumbles and gripes and petitions. But as I have practiced putting praise and thanksgiving first, my perspective changes. I can still grumble and gripe, God hears that and understand that we are but dust. He loves us anyway. He hears our petitions and the Holy Spirit makes intercession for us. Which leads me right back to praise and thanksgiving. No, I may not get everything I asked God for, but I know that He heard me and that I can trust Him to work all things for my good from an eternal perspective.
Give it a try. Spend time in praise and adoration and thankfulness. It will give you a whole new outlook on your day and circumstances.