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We Give God Thanks for His Great Glory

For the wonders that astound us,
For the truths that still confound us,
Most of all, that love has found us,
Thanks be to God.
—“For the Fruits of His Creation,” Traditional Welsh Melody

When we give thanks to God — for whom, by the way, homage must be paid — what exactly is it that we are thanking him for? For the world that he made, most certainly, including especially the gift of life inasmuch as no creature is capable of generating its own.

But what about thanking God for his own life, never mind a myriad of things he has done with it, like taking the time to create so many splendid specimens like ourselves? “Glory to God in the highest,” we exclaim at Holy Mass. “We praise you, we bless you, we adore you, we glorify you, we give you thanks for your great glory, Lord God, heavenly King, O God, almighty Father.”

This is the highest possible tribute the creature can pay. And not, heaven knows, just because of this or that favor bestowed, however gratefully received, but simply due to God’s own glory, the sheer dazzling radiance of his being God. Here is the first of countless prodigies, the one intended to kickstart all the rest. The fact that there is a God, that he is replete with glory — this is the essential and primary motive force for giving thanks.

And so, bringing to mind that lovely Welsh melody we find in the Church’s hymnal, we declare before God, paying due homage to his glory: “For the wonders that astound us.” That God, the great I AM WHO AM, should be God, and that we were made to give him praise and glory, is without question the first and greatest of all possible wonders.

And the second thing for which we are to be thankful? “For the truths that still confound us…” That God’s very name, for instance, the baseline of his identity as God, is Truth, Being. What could be more confounding than that? A God who self-identifies as Logos, whose eternal self-utterance should be the Word, which he both receives from the Father and thereupon returns to the Father, and with whom he joins from all eternity in breathing forth the Spirit? Is knowing that not enigma enough for anyone? Especially as no finite mind could ever succeed in wrapping itself around an Infinite Other.

Read more at National Catholic Register 

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