Praise the Lord
As I begin to write this meditation, I am sitting in my home office trying to ignore the pain that comes from shingles (and I don’t mean the kind on the roof-top). It is the perfect setting to write about “Praising God.”
I just noticed that Psalm 146, 147, 148, 149 and 150 all begin in the same way — “Praise the Lord!” As I look at these Psalms, it becomes clear to me that ‘Praise’ is more than lip service. It is also clear to me that when we praise the LORD, it is not about me or giving thanks to God for something He has done for me. Praising God is a spiritual discipline. It is all about Him and recognizing Him for who He is. Another feature I notice in these Psalms is that “Praising God” is a wonderful antidote for what we are going through.
· We are to praise God from the depth of our being. “Let all that I am Praise the LORD.” Psalm 146:1
· We are to praise God under all circumstances. “But joyful are those who have the God of Israel as their helper, whose hope is in the LORD their God.” Psalm 146:5
Note: Our circumstances are not to dictate our lives. God is greater than our circumstances. The Prophet Isaiah wrote, “When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned. Nor shall the flame scorch you. For I am the LORD your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior …” Isaiah 43:2-3a
In Isaiah 41:10, God says to His people —
“Fear not, for I am with you;
Be not dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you.
Yes, I will help you.
I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.”
Question — Are you going through some major trial right now? This is a great time to begin praising your God.
“LORD, I praise you that you are perfect in all your ways.”
“LORD, I praise You for Your presence as I go through this valley.”
“LORD, I praise You that You are all powerful and greater than any problem or pressure I face.”
“LORD, I praise You that You listen to me when I call out to You.”
“LORD, I praise You, that You have promised to help me to be victorious.”
“LORD, I PRAISE You for Your word and the many promises it contains.”
Question: Have you ever tried singing praises to the LORD? In Psalm 147:1, we read, “How good to sing praises to our God! How delightful and how fitting!”
In Psalm 147:7, we read, “Sing out your thanks to the LORD; sing praises to our God with a harp.”
Maybe you say, “I can’t sing.’ Well forget that excuse Psalm 100:1-3 says, “Make a joyful shout to the LORD, all you lands! Serve the LORD with gladness; Come before His presence with singing. Know that the LORD, He is God; it is He who has made us and not we ourselves. We are His people and the sheep of His pasture.”
There are different places where you can sing and shout out praise to the LORD —
· When you are in the shower.
· When you are on your walk.
· While you are driving your vehicle.
· Whenever you are alone.
God doesn’t mind if you can’t sing a lick. You can at least shout out His praises. He just wants to hear from you.
As I look at Psalm 148, the writer lists many of the things that God has made and it is obvious that all of creation is to “Praise the LORD.” In verse 14 we read, “He has made His people strong, honoring his faithful ones – the people of Israel who are close to Him.”
How Joyce and I praise God for Jubilee Fellowship. These are rough times with Joyce’s health It tears me up to see what it is doing to her. You folks are our family. You have stood by us and you are standing with us in so many ways — prayers, words of encouragement, meals, running errands for us, home visits to see Joyce, finances and so much more. We praise God for a faithful church family you are living proof that God is faithful.
In Psalm 149 we read how the LORD “delights in His people; He crowns the humble with victory. …. He honors them. Let them sing for joy as they lie on their beds” (149:4-5)
In verse 6 we are admonished, “Let the praises of God be in their mouths.” What is in our hearts is to be expressed by our mouths.
Psalm 150 ends on a great note —
Praise the LORD! Praise God in His sanctuary;
Praise Him in his mighty heaven! Praise Him.
For His mighty works, praise His unequaled greatness!” (1-2)
Then in verses 3-5 it talks about the use of all the instruments in praising Him.
Lastly, we read, “Let everything that breathes sing Praises to the LORD!”
As I close this meditation, the shingles pain is still very much present but my soul is so much lighter as I have focused on Him who is greater than my pain.
Glory to his name,