Practicing Praise

Connecting Points

Tuesday, May 08, 2012

Today’s Topic: Practicing Praise

Today’s Text:  Isaiah 65:18 (NIV)   But be glad and rejoice forever in what I will create…

Since God is in control, and all things are working out exactly as He has planned for His glory and for our ultimate good, then it makes perfect rational sense to not be critical complainers but rather to be filled with hope.

Maybe you missed the preliminaries that led up to that statement. God has spoken directly to the issue of our past and our present and given us a vision of our future. He has declared the past to be forgotten and hidden from His eyes (Isaiah 65:16). He has declared that anything and everything about the past and the present will be wiped away in a new creation so that we will no longer remember the former things (vs. 17). Now, in place of complaining there can be rejoicing: in place of sadness there can be gladness (vs. 18).

Last October, while in the Philippines, I was introduced to the Dean of Men at the Bible College that serves as the headquarters for the Evangelical Christian Outreach Foundation Incorporated (ECOFI), which is the ministry that I am privileged to partner with. His name is Christopher Bocboc. We talked for a few minutes, and then he helped me remember something from nine years earlier. I had been invited to an all-night prayer meeting with the students at the college, and he was one of them. I had spent an extended period of time counseling him about his spiritual life and God’s call on his life to full-time ministry. Now, nine years later, there he was as the Dean of Men at the Bible College.

Yesterday on Facebook, Chris posted this, and I wanted to share it with you to encourage you to become people of praise.

Most of us give praise quite naturally. For example, we love watching our favorite sports heroes perform magnificent feats of athletic brilliance. Then we praise them to our friends as we share in their secret wish, just for a moment, that we could feel what it’s like to be in their spotlight! We also praise musical artists and bands when their music entertains or moves us .Do you praise your friends? How about a boyfriend or a girlfriend? There’s nothing wrong with giving praise to others or even receiving some well earned praise. Yet the one we often forget to praise is the One who is the most deserving of it—God. No person is totally praiseworthy in the same sense that God is praiseworthy. We’re all human. We make mistakes. We let others down. We let ourselves down. But God is faithful. He is always true to Himself and to his word. When was the last time you paused to give praise to God? Is it something you do naturally?

THINK ABOUT IT! David recognized all God had done for Him and paused to praise God for God’s faithfulness. Second Samuel 22:4 says” the Lord should be praised.” The next time you hear a great song, instead of praising the band, praise God, the creator of music. The next time you watch an exciting sporting event, praise God, the giver of all talent. Set aside each day to praise God for who He is and what He has done for you.

Be glad and rejoice in what God has created, and to Him alone be all the praise and glory.

Pastor John