Sing Like a Canary
Psalm 34:1 I will bless the LORD at all times; his praise shall continually be in my mouth.
Okay, I get it. It’s pretty obvious what the Lord wants to teach me today.
Just as I was completing my journey to the office this morning, Ron Hutchcraft came on the radio with his daily devotional. It started like this:
Our dog, Missy, had to share our attention with another pet. Yeah, it was a canary that we named in honor of one of our Native American friends. We named the canary Cherokee. Now, this little yellow cheerleader was great for when you were in a bad mood because he never was! As soon as you uncovered his cage in the morning, he began warbling his repertoire of happy tunes. It might be a sunny day, and you had happy singing from him all day long. It might be a miserable day. Guess what? Happy singing all day long! It didn’t matter how the people around our canary felt; happy, stressed, noisy, quiet, or down. It just didn’t matter. No matter what, he was always singing!
My thoughts went back to what my attitude had been when I rolled out of bed this morning. I was tired of these allergies, and the cough that accompanies the constant sinus drainage. Three weeks is enough, and I’m ready to feel better.
When I arrived at the church and sat down at my desk to start my devotions, I opened my Bible to today’s Psalm – the 34th.
I will bless the LORD at all times; his praise shall continually be in my mouth.
I skimmed over it, not wanting to face the fact of failure this early in the morning. I kept reading.
My soul makes its boast in the LORD…Oh, magnify the LORD with me, and let us exalt his name together!
Okay, I get the point. I paused and confessed my prideful attitude to the LORD, and started reading again – this time with a spirit of anticipation of seeing the goodness of God.
- I sought the LORD, and he answered me and delivered me from all my fears…This poor man cried, and the LORD heard him and saved him out of all his troubles. God hears me in my time of need and delivers me after I acknowledge Him with praise.
- Those who look to him are radiant, and their faces shall never be ashamed. Frowns and furrowed brows are replaced with radiant smiles when we look into the face of Jesus rather than the face of our circumstances.
- The angel of the LORD encamps around those who fear him, and delivers them. Even though I cannot see it, there is an embankment of divine construction surrounding me, which is impenetrable by the enemy of my soul, and the gate is guarded by the Angel of the Lord. At all times He is delivering me from the dangers that I cannot see.
- Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good! Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him! Why is my memory of all the goodness of God in the past so susceptible to being overwhelmed by the perceived magnitude of my current situation? I have tasted, and I have seen, and I can consider myself blessed if I choose at this moment to take refuge in Him and stop hoping for improved circumstances to change my attitude.
Then I read this final confirmation of God’s message to me:
But those who seek the Lord lack no good thing.
Here’s what really challenges me – God has said that when I seek Him, and look at life from His perspective, I HAVE EVERYTHING I NEED TO HONOR GOD AND SERVE HIM.
Therefore, I will bless the LORD at all times; his praise shall continually be in my mouth.