Beginning in the very first verse, David speaks to the human heart directly. For the wellbeing of ourselves and our loved ones, we need a perspective of gratitude. David reminds us that we have reason to give thanks because of who the Lord is.
The Lord is good. This simple statement is meaningful because it means that we serve a Lord who is not a neutral, ambiguous spiritual force. Just as important, we do not serve a Lord who is a punitive or vindictive parent. No, we serve a Lord who is good.
As David points out, the Lord is someone whom we can go to for refuge anytime. In other words, the Lord is the trustworthy parent on whom we depend as children of God.
Psalm 118 highlights the Lord’s goodness, justice (or righteousness, in some translations), power, responsiveness to our petitions of vulnerability, and love. The power of the Lord is more sure than the powers that we look to in this world to achieve security; including wealth, social status, and youth. The love that David sees in the Lord is both personal and faithful- it endures. For all of this, we give praise to the Lord when we are on top in life and when we are in the pits.