As we serve the Lord, there are times when we feel that God has forgotten to reward us. This is particularly so when we see others being rewarded. But will God ever forget us? By no means! He said, “Can a mother forget the baby at her breast and have no compassion on the child she has borne? Though she may forget, I will not forget you” (Isa. 49:15). Indeed, he will never forget to reward us for the good works we do. Therefore, let us give our best, for in due time we will receive our reward.
It is worth noting, however, that when we remind the Lord not to forget our work, it helps encourage us to give our best. This was the case of Nehemiah when he was rebuilding the broken walls of Jerusalem. In the midst of the challenges he faced, he repeatedly said, “Remember me with favor, O my God, for all I have done for these people” (Nehemiah 5:19; 13:31). Saying this served to encourage Nehemiah, rather than to say that God is forgetful. He was reminding himself that as he gives his best, God will be faithful to him.
God has a covenant with his Chosen people that he will never break. While Israel had, time and again, rebelled against him, God had always set a time to favour and deliver them from their troubles. And when that time came, God would lavish them with his blessings and restore them. Knowing God’s faithfulness to his covenant people, the Psalmist then pleaded, “Remember me, O LORD , when you show favor to your people, come to my aid when you save them, that I may enjoy the prosperity of your chosen ones, that I may share in the joy of your nation and join your inheritance in giving praise” (Psalm 106:4-5).
Since God has set a time to favour his Chosen ones, it is important then that we discern the times and seasons lest we miss the blessings. In his pleading, the Psalmist wanted not only the general favour of God to Israel, but his salvation as well. God had set a time to save his people; this happened when Jesus Christ came. The apostle Paul said, “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners–of whom I am the worst” (1 Tim. 1:15). Did someone miss this? Yes, many of his own people missed it. The apostle John said, “He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God” (John 1:11-13).
But while salvation is the utmost desire of all who fear the Lord and who are looking forward to spending time with him in eternity, there are three special favours that God’s people are receiving now that we too may want to receive. The first is to enjoy the prosperity of God’s chosen ones. Unlike the prosperity of this world, the prosperity of God’s chosen ones is closely linked to God. The Lord said, “If you fully obey the Lord your God and carefully follow all his commands I give you today, the LORD your God will set you high above all the nations on earth. All these blessings will come upon you and accompany you if you obey the LORD your God” (Deut. 28:1-2). This prosperity is not only material prosperity but prosperity in spirit, soul and body. The Jews have the Shalom of God – completeness and fullness, which are found in Jesus Christ. The apostle Paul said, “and you are complete in Him, who is the head of all principality and power” (Col. 2:10).
Secondly is to share in the joy of God’s nation. The Lord not only promised to bless the Jews individually but as a nation. Moses said to the Israelites, “What other nation is so great as to have their gods near them the way the Lord our God is near us whenever we pray to him? And what other nation is so great as to have such righteous decrees and laws as this body of laws I am setting before you today?” (Deut. 4:7-8). As a nation, they rejoice together as they enjoy the loving care and protection of God. The Psalmist exhorted Israel, saying, “Let Israel rejoice in their Maker; let the people of Zion be glad in their King. Let them praise his name with dancing and make music to him with tambourine and harp” (Psalm 149:2-3).
Lastly is to join God’s inheritance in giving praise. Because they are so blessed by the Lord, the Jews praise the Lord at all times, especially at their designated feasts. This is to acknowledge the fact that their blessings are from the Lord. Just like King David, those who are blessed should express their thanksgiving, saying, “Praise the LORD, O my soul; all my inmost being, praise his holy name. Praise the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits” (Psalm 103:1-2). And the Psalmist said, “It is good to praise the LORD and make music to your name, O Most High, to proclaim your love in the morning and your faithfulness at night” (Psalm 92:1-2). Joining them in giving praises to God should be our desire. Hallelujah!