Christianity, Devotional

Enduring Praise

Over the past three weeks as I suffered with everything from the flu to bronchitis and now my wonderful spring allergies I’ve found it hard to continually praise God. It was easier to complain about how miserable my life was at the moment instead of looking for all the wonderful little things God was placing in each and every day that I could have been praising Him for. I had never been much of an optimist so the first thing I thought of  was the worst case scenario in everything. Now as I’m working on my relationship with God He is teaching me to always search out that small ray of hope in every situation. So instead of complaining about not being able to sing I thank God for the little break He has given me. Yes it’s still frustrating at times when I try to sing to a song on the radio and my voice sounds like hermit the frog, but I’m choosing to praise God for the voice that I do have–frog like or not. In this past week since I’ve decided to focus on praising God instead of complaining guess what I discovered. A happiness beyond description. I love to give God praise because I know that it makes my Father in Heaven smile. He gives so much to us everyday that we could praise Him for but we don’t notice them because we are focusing on the “awful” things happening and wallowing in our own self pity. As a person who was constantly having her own pity parties almost everyday I can honestly say that my journey to realizing all this was definitely a tough one. In fact God had told me to write this blog a week ago but I didn’t feel a bit ready to write about praising Him when that was something I didn’t want to do at the moment. There have been so many moments in my life that I could have enjoyed and praised God for but instead I chose to focus on the unimportant things that I thought ‘ruined’ my day. Praising God should not be an option or something we do only when we feel happy. God deserves our praise at every moment of our lives. Yes there will be times where it’s hard to praise Him but are we going to let the grief and struggles overcome us or overcome our struggles and grief and praise God unconditionally? One of my closest friends has gone through so much in her life. Her singing and music meant everything to her. It was her passion, her safe place, her God-given gift. Yet over the years she lost her ability to sing and eventually even the joy of teaching people to love playing piano as much as she did. Her health deteriorated to the point that going out and doing things was almost impossible. Yet every time I talk to her she is praising God for what He has done in her life! Her praise is enduring. She convicts and encourages me to do the same. I know I will be able to sing again yet she never can so why am I complaining? Why can’t we all learn to praise God even a fraction of how much we complain to Him. We are always asking Him to fix our problems but often times forget to thank Him for the things He has fixed. We always ask God to give us this and please bless me with that yet we never remember to praise God for the multiple things He has given us. This week I want to encourage all of you to find 10 things everyday to praise God for, and not just the obvious. When something bad happens look at it in a different perspective and praise God for His presence in your life. My praise this weekend as we celebrate the day Jesus rose from the grave and defeated death, is that He looked at me and saw a reason to die for me so that I could be with Him forever in Heaven. That reason was that He loved me beyond compare and had a special purpose for me. So as I continue to overcome things in my life I’m praying that God will help me to see the bright side of things, all the things to praise Him for, instead of focusing on the hardships I may face. I want a praise that Endures all things!  Psalm 66:1-4 “Make a joyful shout to God, all the earth! Sing out the honor of His name; Make His praise glorious. How awesome are Your works! Through the greatness of Your power Your enemies shall submit themselves to You. All the earth shall worship You and sing praises to You; They shall sing praises to Your name.”

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