On this day I will proclaim blessings to my God...
Our God has done remarkable things for us the children of men, to which we testify this day. Long ago, he turned the sea into dry land, and our spiritual ancestors crossed over to safety, escaping from certain destruction at the hand of their enemies. Safely on the other side, they rejoiced in God, although I'm sure that they praised him while they were crossing over as well! Our God rules over all things on the earth even as he reigns in the heavens by his eternal power. He holds all of the physical laws of the universe in his hands, and his eyes behold every detail of our existence.
On this day I will proclaim blessings to my God: let everyone who hears me do likewise! Make your voiced praise be heard even in the highest heavens. For God steadied my legs when I walked through lifes dark passages, and he prevented my foot from slipping. Reader, wont he do the same for you? He refines our rough edged spirit, and proves us, just as the silversmith refines pure silver.
Hear my testimony, all you that draw near: I did my best in life to follow after God, and yet trouble seemed to fall upon me suddenly. Great nets of tribulation hindered my every move. Affliction made my body to throb, causing my bones to tremble and my flesh to ache. In this state of decline, my accusers took advantage of me, and rode over my head with their accusations. Look at that one who trusted in God, they said! Hearing their words, I felt as if I was walking through fire and flood. But then God caused me to cross over to safety, just like those ancient promise keepers who walked with God out of Egypt's bondage! As in the days of old, I have been faithfully guided out of trouble, and my path has led me to a wealthy place of refreshing and blessing! Because of this I will go into his house with holy offerings! There on my face, I will proclaim the vows which my lips uttered during my days of trouble.
Gather close to me, and listen to my words all you who fear God, and I will tell you what he has done in my life. In my distress I cried unto him, and I raised my voice and called out to my God. All the while, I kept thinking of the things in my life that might separate me from God; and I worried that because of my failings the Lord would refuse to hear me. But just the opposite was true! My Lord did hear me! Almost immediately he bent down and attended to the sound of my cry! He listened to the words of my prayer. Blessed be the Lord, for he has not turned aside my prayer, nor his mercy from me!
My family, as well as my closest friends, have turned out hearts to hear God, and this dim path has been made full of light. How our faces do shine, free from any trace of discouragement. My associates notice what has happened in my life, and all who know me have heard me repeat this testimony - that I cried, and the Lord heard my cry, and came quickly to save me from out of all of my distress.
Whats more, the angel of the Lord has set up his camp around me. I am learning that this isn't merely a passing blessing! So come, reader! Taste of this rich life for yourself. See how good it is to know the God that I follow! How blessed are all of us who trust in him. Reverence him! Every day we are involved the process of becoming his saints. Look around you. The young lions that walk on the plains are going hungry, and the beasts of the field are constantly in pursuit of their nourishment in order to stay alive: but we who seek the Lord do not want for any good thing.
Hear me my children, come near and listen to me with both ears: Ive walked the paths you walk, and I can tell you how good it is to serve God. Do you want to have a good, long life and enjoy every minute of existence on this earth? Start by keeping your tongue from uttering unpleasant words, and guard your lips from speaking guile. Put aside your evil ways and spend your energies for the good of your neighbor, and follow the ways of peace. The eyes of the Lord are ever upon the righteous, and his ears are finely tuned to the voice of their cry.
The face of the Lord is set against all those who follow after evil. Their very memory shall be cut off from the earth. But when the righteous cry, the Lord hears them, and he delivers them from their distress. The Lord is near to the broken hearted, and saves those who are contrite in spirit. During our sojourn on earth we might experience suffering and affliction, even more than we feel is our fair share: but the Lord does deliver us from all of these trials! He keeps our bones intact, and not one of them is broken! The evil that they chase after will eventually destroy the wicked: and those who hate the righteous will soon become wanderers in a desolate place. But the Lord redeems the souls of his servants: and not one who trusts in him will be left outside of these promises.