Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Ephesians 5:19-20 KJV
“Have you written a thank you note yet?” Mom inevitably asked every year right after Christmas. Talk about writer’s block: After I had penned a heartfelt “Thank you for the cap gun.” to my grandparents, I was completely out of ideas. But as word painfully followed word in those brief literary tomes, I slowly learned to be grateful for people who had loved me enough to send me a gift.
In Ephesians the Apostle Paul sounds a little like my mom. He wants to make sure that the Ephesian believers learn how to be thankful, to God and to express their gratitude by praise.“Great!” You might respond; “But I already do that in church.” Well, yes corporate worship is important; however thank you notes need to be written individually. If personal worship seems intimidating, Paul gives us three clues on how to begin. Just as my childhood thank you notes began with the basics, so praise can start with simply speaking to God with the familiar words of Psalms and hymns. That speaking can be like setting a tea pot on to boil. Little by little the temperature rises and bubbles begin to form. Those bubbles become songs that form in our hearts and begin to flow out in melodies towards God. But if you leave that tea pot on long enough you will begin hear a loud whistle. That is when our melodies turn to joyful thanksgiving to God for all He has done and given us in Christ. That it is the very best thank you note of all!