We Need to Praise the Lord
I am reminded of the children’s song ‘Count your blessings. Name them one by one. Count your blessings see what God has done, and it will surprise you what the Lord has done!’ Truly, as we stop and look around there are many things we can praise God for. Over and over again, we find in the Bible that praise plays an important role in our Christian lives and if we could understand how important praise really is then we would be determined to praise God even more. What have you got to praise God about today? Let’s focus on those things and begin to praise Him. Take advantage of yet another opportunity to just Praise God.
But what is Praise? Praising God is what happens when a human being expresses his or her joy to the Lord. It takes place as we consciously bring glory to God. Psalm 148:1-5 says ‘Praise the Lord, O heavens! Praise him from the skies! Praise him, all his angels, all the armies of heaven. Praise him, sun and moon and all you twinkling stars. Praise him, skies above. Praise him, vapors high above the clouds. Let everything he has made give praise to him.’ Praise is not only an expression of joy, but also of our love for God. It is our response to the reality of His ‘Wonderfulness’ in our lives. In Psalm 150:6 it says ‘Let everything that has breath praise the Lord. Praise the Lord!’
Reasons for praising the Lord
There are various reasons for us to praise the Lord. Firstly just for who He is and then also for what He has done. We call praising God for who He is: adoration. We need to praise God in this way, acknowledging who He is. This happens when we say, ‘You are God and we praise you, you are Lord we acclaim you. You are the eternal father, all creation worships you.’ This is one of the major reasons for praising God and this is something we can all do!
The other major reason for praising God is for what He has done. This kind of praise is called thanksgiving. It speaks of our thankfulness towards God for His goodness in our lives. Psalm 118:21 says ‘I will praise You, for You have answered me’ and Psalm 139:14 says I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works, and that my soul knows very well’ and again in Psalm 100:4 – 5 ‘Go through his open gates with great thanksgiving; enter his courts with praise. Give thanks to him and bless his name. 5For the Lord is always good. He is always loving and kind, and his faithfulness goes on and on to each succeeding generation.’ We have so much to be thankful for and that is reason to praise the Lord!
David is perhaps one of the best examples of someone who was the greatest praiser that ever lived. He understood how important it was to praise God. I believe that God is raising up a new generation of ‘Davidic’ people, people who will understand what it really means to praise and worship God. I want to be one of these people. Listen to David’s heart: Psalm 9:1-2 ‘O Lord, I will praise you with all my heart and tell everyone about the marvelous things you do. 2I will be glad, yes, filled with joy because of you. I will sing your praises, O Lord God above all gods.’ Psalm 145:1 ‘I will praise you, my God and King, and bless your name each day and forever.’ David used to call on the people to praise God and the same is true for us. I want to call you to praise God.
God responds to our praise
The thing that is so wonderful about praise is that God responds to our praise. In 2 Chronicles 20:21-22 we read, ‘After consultation with the leaders of the people, he determined that there should be a choir leading the march, clothed in sanctified garments and singing the song “His Loving-Kindness Is Forever” as they walked along praising and thanking the Lord! 22And at the moment they began to sing and to praise, the Lord caused the armies of Ammon, Moab, and MountSeir to begin fighting among themselves, and they destroyed each other!’ Notice that it was at the very moment that they started to sing and praise that God brought the victory. Their lives were in danger. They were about to be attacked by the enemy. But God brought them victory and that victory came with the praise. I believe that God will bring many of us victory, if we can turn our focus off our problems and begin to praise. If you are under attack, begin to praise the Lord. You never know!
We have actually also been created for God’s praise and glory. To praise God is part of our purpose. Yet life keeps us busy with everything else, so that we do not do the one thing for which we were created. I read a statement recently: ‘"If the devil can't make you bad he will make you busy." Too busy to praise God! We need to be on the look out for this trap. In Ephesians 1:12 we read that ‘God’s purpose in this was that we should praise God and give glory to him for doing these mighty things for us.’ We were created to praise God so let us make a quality decision today to make praise part of our daily lives.
There is also a lot of praise going on in Heaven, in fact there is worship happening there all the time. Even the elders in heaven are worshipping God. Revelation 4:10-11 ‘The twenty-four elders fall down before Him who sits on the throne and worship Him who lives forever and ever, and cast their crowns before the throne, saying: “You are worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honor and power; For You created all things, and by Your will they exist and were created.” One thing that we will do in heaven is that we will praise and worship God. I most certainly look forward to this. Praising God together with all the multitudes in heaven. What a joy that will be!
How to praise the Lord
But how can we praise God as we aught to? Praise is simple and not complicated. We can praise God as we pray and as we sing. We can praise individually or as we meet together. It can be spontaneous or prearranged. It can flow out of the joy and thankfulness that is in our hearts. Psalm 71:6 ‘From birth I have relied on you; you brought me forth from my mother’s womb. I will ever praise you.’ Psalm 71:14 ‘But as for me, I will always have hope; I will praise you more and more.’ That’s the way to go.
So I would like to encourage you today to become a symphony of praise to God in every aspect of your life. Praise Him in your quiet time; praise Him when you are in the shower, when you are walking down the street or in the car. Praise Him at work, Praise Him in every situation, PRAISE GOD! He is worthy to be praised!!