Encouragement for your daily walk with God
Jewish tradition has one Psalm, and one Psalm only, which is called The Great Psalm of Praise. It’s Psalm 136. I asked one of my Jewish friends why this Psalm was deserving of such a title. He said that it came from the Talmud. The Talmud says that this Song praises the God who sits in heaven and blesses every creature with food, as verse 25 points out, “He gives food to every creature.”
Rabbis explain that praise is due to God because He does not consider Himself too high, or too great, to care for the needs of His creation. Even though He is the supreme authority over the universe, and even though He has unlimited power, He doesn’t consider Himself too important to care for the needs of the smallest of creatures. Neither is He unconcerned with the daily need of every living thing.
When was the last time you saw a King or Queen serving food in a soup kitchen? Oh sure, you may have seen it once or twice in a photo op, but it surely isn’t a daily habit. Typically, the the higher the position of a person, the less time they spend serving those less fortunate. But not with God!
A Jewish legend has it that a high ranking Rabbi was walking down the street, followed by a rather large crowd. As he turned a corner, he heard the sound of a child crying. He stopped, and pushed his way through the crowd until he found the source of the crying. It was a little girl.
She was seated in a doorway, and her eyes were swollen from the many tears that had fallen from her cheeks. He sat next to her, “My child, why are you crying so?” She replied, “ My best friend told me that my dress is ugly.” “You tell her,” he said in a most pleasing tone, “that the Rabbi thinks that the dress is beautiful, and that you are more beautiful than the dress.” The little girl smiled and then ran off to play.
Whether it’s wiping away the tears of a child, feeding the hungry and/or homeless, or taking out your neighbor’s garbage, it is a praise to God to help others. His praise is our praise too. When we humble ourselves to serve others, we rise to great heights in the eyes of God. God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble [see James 4.6].
He gives food to every creature. His love endures forever. Psalm 136.25