"It is good to give thanks to the LORD, and to sing praises to Your name, O Most High (Ps. 92:1). "Praise the LORD! Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever" (Ps. 106:1). This week, here in the United States, we will celebrate Thanksgiving Day. It is a special day when we are encouraged to pause and give thanks for the many blessings we have. But everyday should be a day of thanksgiving for each believer. "In everything give thanks" (I Thess. 5:18). And that certainly is the theme of this week's hymn choice which is of Swedish heritage. The words were penned by August Ludvig Storm (1862-1914). He was converted to Christ in a Salvation Army meeting. He joined the Salvation Army Corps and became one of its leading officers. He wrote this hymn's text for the Army publication, Stridsropet (The War Cry), on December 5, 1891. The original Swedish version had four stanzas, with each verse beginning with the word 'tack' (thanks)". The gratitude expressed to God ranges from the "dark and dreary fall" to the "pleasant, balmy springtime," and "pain" as well as "pleasure." Storm suffered a back ailment at the age of 37 that left him crippled for life. But he continued to administer his Salvation Army duties until his death. Despite this handicap, Storm shared numerous things that he was thankful for. A year before his death, he wrote another poem in which he thanked God for the years of calm as well as pain. This hymn was written in Swedish and was translated into English in 1931, by Carl Ernest Backstrom (1901-1984). In Storm's Swedish version, he lists some thirty-two things to be thankful for. His hymn could serve as a good outline of things that we should thank the Lord for. Let me challenge you to use this hymn during your season of thanksgiving this week.
1. Thanks to God for my Redeemer,
Thanks for all Thou dost provide!
Thanks for times now but a memory,
Thanks for Jesus by my side!
Thanks for pleasant, balmy springtime,
Thanks for dark and stormy fall!
Thanks for tears by now forgotten,
Thanks for peace within my soul!
2. Thanks for prayers that Thou hast answered,
Thanks for what Thou dost deny!
Thanks for storms that I have weathered,
Thanks for all Thou dost supply!
Thanks for pain, and thanks for pleasure,
Thanks for comfort in despair!
Thanks for grace that none can measure,
Thanks for love beyond compare!
3. Thanks for roses by the wayside,
Thanks for thorns their stems contain!
Thanks for home and thanks for fireside,
Thanks for hope, that sweet refrain!
Thanks for joy and thanks for sorrow,
Thanks for heav'nly peace with Thee!
Thanks for hope in the tomorrow,
Thanks through all eternity!
Listen to it here. LISTEN