“It is good to give thanks to the LORD, and sing praises to Your name, O Most High; to declare Your lovingkindness in the morning, and Your faithfulness every night…The righteous shall flourish like a palm tree, he shall grow like a cedar in Lebanon. Those who are planted in the house of the LORD shall flourish in the courts of our God. They shall still bear fruit in old age; they shall be fresh and flourishing, to declare that the LORD is upright; He is my Rock, and there is no unrighteousness in Him.” Psalm 92:1, 2, 12–15

Forgetfulness is often the bane of our existence. We may call our episodes of forgetfulness “a senior moment,” “a sign I am too busy,” or “my bad” and slough it off feigning sincere remorse. When my kids were relatively little, I remember the constant game of tug-of-war that went on between the parental vision for a well-run household versus the vision of “kid-dom” (the way they desired to run their own lives). A common excuse for disobedience was simply “I forgot.” The thinking bears slight resemblance to the fallacious idea that “it is easier to ask for forgiveness rather than to ask for permission.” It became apparent to my wife and me that we had to assist in the remembering process and tighten up the operation of our home. We had to find a way to make sure they did not “forget” things that mattered to those of us who had the long-range view.

When it comes to the things that God is concerned about, you have to make God’s priorities yours for there are always consequences for forgetting Him. Psalm 103:2 reads, “Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits.” God repeats His warnings to His forgetful people, Israel, against growing calloused to the privilege of being His chosen people. In Deuteronomy 4:7ff He intones through Moses, “For what great nation is there that has God so near to it, as the LORD our God is to us, for whatever reason we may call upon Him? …Only take heed to yourself, and diligently keep yourself, lest you forget the things your eyes have seen, and lest they depart from your heart all the days of your life. And teach them to your children and your grandchildren.” Just two chapters later (6:10ff) the natural tendency to ungrateful forgetfulness is warned against. “So it shall be, when the LORD your God brings you into the land of which He swore to your fathers…to give you large and beautiful cities which you did not build, houses full of all good things, which you did not fill, hewn-out wells which you did not dig, vineyards and olive trees which you did not plant—when you have eaten and are full—then beware, lest you forget the LORD….” Deuteronomy chapter 8 (especially 17–20) again reminds us that prosperity often leads a person to forgetfulness. By Psalm 78:10f we see Israel had forgotten God, “They did not keep the covenant of God; they refused to walk in His law, and forgot His works and His wonders that He had shown them.”

Lest you think that these warnings only belong to the nation of Israel, notice the words of Psalm 9:17. “The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God.” Forgetting God is not a healthy behavior. Twice in Psalm 119, 16 and 93, David declares he will strive to not forget God and His Word. James illustrates what forgetting God’s Word looks like in 1:22ff. He calls upon believers to be doers of the Word and not hearers only, “but he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does.”

Our text for this study is Psalm 92. Its heading states that it is a psalm for the Sabbath Day, meaning that on the day of rest the Israelites were to be mindful of God’s lovingkindness in the morning and His faithfulness every night.” Within the psalm believers are reminded to be thankful and rehearse the glories of God for His mercy in salvation, His great works, His justice, and His faithfulness to His own. When Israel grew complacent and forgot God, He withheld His blessings. But when they obeyed in thankful remembrance, just look how gracious God was to them. The final verses of the psalm speak of flourishing, of favor, of fruitfulness, and of being nurtured by God!

As with anything worthwhile in life you have to plan to succeed. Every priority has its proper place in order of importance. Unless you place thanksgiving to God at the head of the line you will fail to give Him His due and will likely be forgetful of Him. Jeremiah 2:32 reads, “Can a virgin forget her ornaments, or a bride her attire? Yet My people have forgotten Me days without number.” Thank God He cannot forget us, as Isaiah 49:15f says, “Can a woman forget her nursing child, and not have compassion on the son of her womb? Surely they may forget, yet I will not forget you. See, I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands.”

Make it a priority to observe regular seasons of thanksgiving unto your Lord. Start with a slow, meditative read of Psalm 103 and see if it doesn’t jumpstart your thanksgiving and prime the pump of praise in the depths of your soul. (Philippians 4:4ff, Colossians 3:17) Trust and obey.