Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name.Psalm 100:4
The praise we are urged in Psalm 100 to offer is, once again, not because of the things of this world. When you think about it, this world is filled with trials and tribulations. There is real pain and suffering here. Sometimes it is simply impossible to feel joyful. How can people enter the Lord’s gates with thanksgiving when what has come through their own doors is cancer, divorce, bankruptcy, hunger, childlessness, home foreclosure, job loss, drug addiction, dishonesty, or even death?
In the midst of suffering, we can give praise because our God is greater than our pain. When our world has closed in around us, we still can say, “The Lord is good” (v. 5a). When we receive another rejection, we cling to the fact that “his love endures forever” (v. 5a). When things and people abandon us, we know that “his faithfulness continues through all generations” (v. 5b). Because the Lord is good, we can worship with gladness in days of sorrow. He is our joy and our hope. The world is passing away, but He is our inheritance.
Our source of joy, thanksgiving, and praise is not in the things of the world but in the Creator of it.