26 Jan 2017
After our First Reading we said, “Thanks be to God.” And then we sang, “Alleluia,” which means “Praise God [Yahweh].” And after the Gospel Reading we said, “Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.” We give praise and thanks to God because God has spoken to us.
In the psalm today, we heard about the “marvelous deeds,” the marvelous actions and things that God has done. And Jesus says that those things are like a lamp, they’re like a light for us. If you ever go into a dark room and you’re trying to find the light switch, and then you find it and turn the light on, it’s a relief—because you can see where you’re going!
Well, it’s the same when God does marvelous things for us; they give a reason to be thankful and to praise God. And that’s why after the First Reading, and before and after the Gospel Reading, we say things like: “Thanks be to God,” and “Alleluia” and “Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.” God has spoken to us, he’s shone light on us, and our response to be thankful and to give praise.
And that’s something we can do outside of Mass, too. For example, when it’s a beautiful day outside, we can say, “Alleluia, Praise God!” Or when somebody does something for us, we can say, “Thanks be to God!” (We already say Thank You to the person, but we can say Thank You to God, too.) Or when we realize how much God loves each and every one of us, we can say, “Praise to you, Jesus!”
God does many, many wonderful things for us. And what else can say, but, “Thanks be to God. Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ! And Alleluia!”