I don't know about you, but songs have always had a way of connecting me to my emotions and thoughts. I can hear a song from my teenage years and still feel like I am back in that time when that song had the most meaning to me.
Today, our worship songs in church are one of my favorite parts of being there. I try to totally focus on the words and sing praise to Him. Sometimes I get so caught up in emotion that it's hard for me to sing because I get welled up. John Waller's song "While I'm Waiting" has held special meaning to me over the past couple of years.
Pastor Rickey is beginning a 7 week study on the book of Psalms that I am really excited and looking forward to..."Songs in the Key of Life!" The book of Psalms is a book of songs about life. I think Pastor said it best when he said, "in every mess there is a message." It is reassuring to me in times when there are no solutions that I can control that I can turn to Him!
Sometimes people can misunderstand that Christians are not praising God for all things, but rather we are praising Him in all things/circumstances. That's what Faith is all about, isn't it? Trusting in Him, that He is in control, that He will do what is best for us, that even when things are tough or don't seem fair He is teaching us, strengthening our faith, possibly to have us someday be there for someone else going through the same thing, right? Right!
So let's get to it! This week Pastor started the series with "A Pattern for Praise" from Psalm 145. He challenged us to try these 5 steps every day for 21 days to then create a habit of praise that will take over even when we are not thinking about it! As pastor said, "praise the Lord not curse the world!"
1. Praise God every day!
I will exalt you, my God the King; I will praise your name for ever and ever. Every day I will praise you and extol your name for ever and ever. Great is the LORD and most worthy of praise; his greatness no one can fathom. Psalm 145:1-3 (NIV)
Yesterday in church we had such a treat...the little ones came in to say a poem and a sing a song to the moms! We so enjoyed seeing our girlie and her friends have such joy and praise for the Lord! I learn so much about having faith, trust and joy in the Lord from my girlie! She doesn't think twice about starting to sing a song to him regardless of who's around! If she has a problem, say the hiccups, she stops and prays right then to God to take them away! If you have a girl then you know how much they love their hair getting brushed...not! Or should I say knots? The other day she said "Jesus totally needs to take these knots to jail!" May we all sing spontaneous praise to God and have a deep faith that reminds us to give all of our problems to Him!
2. Praise God to the next generation!
One generation will commend your works to another; they will tell of your mighty acts. They will speak of the glorious splendor of your majesty, and I will meditate on your wonderful works. They will tell of the power of your awesome works, and I will proclaim your great deeds. They will celebrate your abundant goodness and joyfully sing of your righteousness. Psalm 145:4-7 (NIV)
One important thing we do when we pray together as a family is always start by giving thanks and praise for every blessing He has given us. Even at 5 my girlie is learning to focus on all of the good that God does and will continue to do!
3. Praise God for who He is!
The LORD is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love. The LORD is good to all; he has compassion on all he has made. Psalm 145:8-9 (NIV)
Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and your dominion endures through all generations. The LORD is faithful to all his promises and loving toward all he has made. The LORD upholds all those who fall and lifts up all who are bowed down. Psalm 145:13-14 (NIV)
He does not kick those who are down! He lifts us up, provides comfort, peace, He knows what we need! Thank you!
4. Praise God for how he provides for us!
The eyes of all look to you, and you give them their food at the proper time. You open your hand and satisfy the desires of every living thing. Psalm 145:15-16 (NIV)
He certainly provides for our needs! I am so thankful to Him for each day! We can in all circumstances "peel back the junk and see the giver of good" as Pastor shared with us!
5. Praise God for his loving care!
The LORD is righteous in all his ways and loving toward all he has made. Psalm 145:17
His love is an action verb
- He is near. The LORD is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth. Psalm 145:18 (NIV)
- He hears our cries. He fulfills the desires of those who fear him; he hears their cry and saves them. Psalm 145:19 (NIV)
- He watches over. The LORD watches over all who love him, but all the wicked he will destroy. My mouth will speak in praise of the LORD. Let every creature praise his holy name for ever and ever. Psalm 145:20-21 (NIV)
Pastor closed by reminding us of the awesome truth that Jesus is a friend who:
- is compassionate
- is gracious
- is slow to anger
- keeps promises
- lifts me up when I am down
- gives me what I need
- is truthful
- is never busy to talk and listen
- has the power to fill my desires
- runs to my cries of help
- watches over me
What song speaks to you most at this time in your life?