What does Psalms 86:12 really mean?

Psalms 86:12 is about expressing gratitude and reverence towards God for His mercy and steadfast love, acknowledging His greatness and seeking to faithfully walk in His ways.

12 I give thanks to you, O Lord my God, with my whole heart,
and I will glorify your name forever.


Setting the Scene for Psalms 86:12

In Psalms 86, we find King David in a moment of deep reflection and prayer. The scene is set in the royal chambers of the palace in Jerusalem, where David, known for his devotion to God, is seeking solace and guidance. The room is adorned with rich tapestries and flickering candles, creating a warm and reverent atmosphere.

Surrounded by his trusted advisors and courtiers, David kneels in prayer, pouring out his heart to the Lord. Among those present are Nathan the prophet, Joab the commander of the army, and Abigail, David’s wise and loyal wife. Each of them has come to offer support and counsel to the king in his time of need.

As David recites the words of Psalms 86, his voice echoes through the chamber, filled with a mix of humility, gratitude, and supplication. The flickering candlelight casts a soft glow on the faces of those gathered, highlighting the solemnity of the moment as they join together in seeking God’s mercy and guidance.

What is Psalms 86:12 about?

The psalmist in Psalms 86:12 expresses deep devotion and unwavering commitment to praising God with all their heart. The act of praising God with all one’s heart signifies a complete and wholehearted dedication to God, leaving no room for doubt or reservation. It demonstrates a fervent desire to worship and honor God in the most authentic and sincere manner possible.

Have you ever experienced a moment of such overwhelming gratitude and reverence for God that it moved you to praise Him with your whole being? This verse serves as a reminder of the transformative power of heartfelt worship and the profound impact it can have on our connection with God. It challenges us to reflect on our own level of devotion and commitment to praising God in our lives. How can we strive to emulate the psalmist’s deep love for God and offer Him the praise and adoration He truly deserves? The psalmist’s example inspires us to praise the Lord with all our hearts, seeking to deepen our relationship with Him and cultivate a spirit of worship that is genuine and wholehearted. May this verse encourage us to approach God with sincerity, gratitude, and reverence, allowing our praise to spring forth from a place of deep love and faith in Him.

Understanding what Psalms 86:12 really means


In Psalms 86:12, we encounter a verse that resonates with the essence of gratitude and wholehearted worship towards God. It is a heartfelt expression within a prayer by David, showcasing his profound devotion and unwavering trust in the divine.

Context and Cross-References

Psalms 86:12 reads, “I will praise you, Lord my God, with all my heart; I will glorify your name forever.” This verse echoes the sentiment of loving and praising God with one’s entire being, akin to Deuteronomy 6:5, which emphasizes loving God with all one’s heart, soul, and strength. Furthermore, in Matthew 22:37, Jesus reinforces the significance of wholehearted devotion to God, aligning with the theme of Psalms 86:12. Psalms 9:1 also underscores the importance of gratitude and wholehearted praise, mirroring the sentiments expressed in Psalms 86:12.

Relevance to People Today

In a world fraught with distractions and adversities, Psalms 86:12 serves as a poignant reminder for individuals to center their hearts and minds on God. It prompts us to cultivate a spirit of thankfulness and to acknowledge God’s presence and blessings amidst life’s challenges. Engaging in wholehearted worship can offer solace and direction, particularly during uncertain times.


Imagine someone grappling with a significant life hurdle, such as a severe illness. Despite the adversity, they opt to anchor themselves in faith and gratitude towards God. This choice not only aids them in coping but also serves as a beacon of inspiration to those around them. This narrative vividly illustrates how wholeheartedly praising God can metamorphose difficult circumstances, infusing hope and fortitude.

Meaningful Phrases and Detailed Explanation

The phrase “I will praise you, Lord my God” signifies a personal and intimate connection with God, acknowledging Him as the Lord and pledging to worship Him. “With all my heart” underscores the essence of complete devotion and sincerity, urging individuals to offer unreserved and undivided adoration. “I will glorify your name forever” conveys the perpetual nature of worship, highlighting that praising God transcends fleeting moments, constituting a lifelong and eternal commitment.


Psalms 86:12 beckons us to lead lives steeped in gratitude and wholehearted worship. By directing our focus towards God and extending genuine praise, we can discover resilience, tranquility, and purpose in our daily endeavors. This verse stands as a potent reminder of the paramountcy of nurturing a profound and dedicated relationship with the Divine.

How can I give thanks for God’s mercy?

One way to show gratitude for God’s mercy is through acts of kindness and compassion towards others. We mirror God’s own mercy towards us by extending mercy and forgiveness to those around us. We can also express thanks through prayer and worship, acknowledging God’s abundant mercy in our lives and giving praise for His faithfulness and love.

Additionally, we can give thanks for God’s mercy by sharing our testimony with others. We not only give thanks but also inspire and encourage others to trust in God’s mercy by sharing how God has shown mercy to us in times of need and how His grace has transformed our lives. Living a life of gratitude and humility, recognizing that all good things come from God, is another way to show our appreciation for His endless mercy towards us.


Dear friend, it’s time to reflect on Psalms 86:12. Let’s embrace gratitude and humility towards our Creator. Our lives, like projects at work, should shine with His love and grace, just like family bonds enrich our existence. Let’s commit to deepening our bond with Him through prayer, diving into His teachings, and serving others. Are you prepared to heed His guidance and journey in His footsteps?