What Shall I Return unto the Lord?

Sherry Quinn and George Cohen


In what ways will you give back to God as God has given to you?  Will your offering of thanks be limited to money, or will you also give back to God by sharing your various skill sets and unique talents?

In Psalm 116, David proclaims his gratitude to the Lord for all of the manifold blessings he has enjoyed.  He speaks of how when he was brought low the Lord lifted him up.  He talks about his deliverance in days of danger.  In verse 12 David asks a simple question: “What shall I return to the Lord for all his bounty to me?”  You and I should continually ask the same question: “What shall I return to the Lord?”

Psalm 116: 1         I love the Lord, because he has heard

my voice and my supplications.

2    Because he inclined his ear to me,

therefore I will call on him as long as I live.

3    The snares of death encompassed me;

the pangs of Sheol laid hold on me;

I suffered distress and anguish.

4    Then I called on the name of the Lord:

“O Lord, I pray, save my life!”

5    Gracious is the Lord, and righteous;

our God is merciful.

6    The Lord protects the simple;

when I was brought low, he saved me.

7    Return, O my soul, to your rest,

for the Lord has dealt bountifully with you. [1]


Today is Sunday, January 31, 2016.  After church, my sons, wife and I gathered at a local restaurant.  After a weekend of out of town guests, it was now just the four of us.  The younger son made an observation: “We have a lot to be grateful for: we are truly blessed!”  For a brief moment we counted our blessings, gave thanks for the meal and then enjoyed the food.

Psalm 116: 12What shall I return to the Lord

for all his bounty to me?

13  I will lift up the cup of salvation

and call on the name of the Lord,

14  I will pay my vows to the Lord

in the presence of all his people. [2]


Questions for Reflection:

  1. What ways do you try to return an offering to the Lord?
  2. How can you give back to God in non-monetary ways?



Lord, I give thanks for the constant and continual blessings you render to me.  I look at my body and I give the glory to you.  When I think of my mind with so much more capacity than I will probably ever fully use, I give all praise to your Holy name.  When I think of all of the people you have brought into my life, each with unique flavors and colors, I count each person as a blessing and reflection of your majesty.  Lord, there is not enough money in the world or time remaining in my life for me to repay you for all you have done for me.  When I was lonely you comforted me.  When I was lost you found me.  When I was angry you calmed me.  To you I life up the cup of salvation and will continually call upon your Holy name.  Through Jesus Christ my Lord and Savior I pray.  Amen.


Written by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III

Photo by Nicholas Hood III of Sherry Quinn and George Cohen

Additional Prayers Photos and Meditations from Rev. Dr. Nicholas Hood III at https://nicholashoodiiiministries.wordpress.com/

Learn more about Nicholas Hood III Ministries and how you can participate in this ministry of hope and good will at www.nicholashoodiiiministries.org


[1] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Ps 116:1–7). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.

[2] The Holy Bible: New Revised Standard Version. (1989). (Ps 116:12–14). Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.