Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever. Let the redeemed of the LORD tell their story — those he redeemed from the hand of the foe, those he gathered from the lands, from east and west, from north and south. Psalm 107:1–3

Psalm 107, the psalm appointed for this Sunday, is a beautiful union of praise for God’s goodness without denying human struggle and hardship.

Every faith-filled believer knows that God is good, his love endures forever, and the redeemed have a story to tell. But if one only reads the opening words of Psalm 107, one might misconstrue the psalmist’s gratitude and optimism for a bad case of denial. It would be easy to believe that he writes a story about people who soar from mountain top to mountain top, whose lives drip with sugar, spice, and everything nice.

But as we read the “whole” story, we learn that that’s not the case.

Some in this story wandered in desert wastelands, some sat in darkness, and some wasted away from hunger and thirst. Others faced storms, sickness, and death. Then, some rebelled against the Lord, playing the fool and suffering the consequences caused by their sin.

In the face of everything, the psalmist includes a story of God’s goodness and steadfast love (8, 21,31, 43). God always hears the cries of his people. He delivers those who trust in him, and forgives those who confess sin, repent of stubborn ways, and return to the Lord.

He may not answer prayer or rescue in our preferred way, but he always works things together for the good of those who love him (Romans 8:28). Life is good because God is good, even when hardships fill it. With that said, may our stories reflect the psalmist as we joyfully pray and give thanks in all circumstances. Remember, this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus (1 Thessalonians 5:16–18).

The peace of the Lord be with you.