True praise releases the presence of God.
I absolutely love to hear stories of how God works in the lives of people. It’s so encouraging because I believe that if He did it there, then He can do it here. And when we talk about the good things that God has done, we release more wind on the testimony to do it again. We get to ride the draft of it.
That being said, I want to repeat a testimony that I heard recently. A woman with stage four cancer, in a wheelchair, went to watch her grandson be part of a children’s worship conference. The conference was all about teaching kids to press into the Spirit of God and release them into worship, in all kinds of ways.
One way the kids were learning to worship was with flags. His banner over me is love. At one point, the kids spontaneously began to march in a flag-waving parade around the room. To look on it, it just looked cute, but the power of their act of praise was enormous.
The power of God fell on the woman in the wheelchair and she felt warmth flow down from the top of her head all the way to her toes. Her cancer was instantly healed, and documented at the local hospital. The children were not involved in a healing ministry. They were released to worship, and their praise touched God so powerfully that He could not help Himself and healed someone.
That is such a wonderful example of how powerful praise and worship really is. I want to be part of that, because God is that good.
Give God the praise that He deserves.
Praise is something that we initiate. It does not come bundled with faith. Just because we believe in God and say that He is Lord, we are not automatically praising Him. Praise is intentional.
Praise is an act of worship. You will often hear of “praise and worship”, as if they are separate, but really what is meant is joyful worship followed by reverent worship. Praise is joyful worship directly from your heart to God.
Praise is your delight in who God is. The scripture refers to putting on the garment of praise because it is an attitude that we take on—joy,delight, love. It is our expression to our God from the depths of our soul to the heights of heaven.
Sitting in church next to someone engaged in praise does not draw you in with them. If you do not participate yourself, then there is no praise in your heart. If you can’t praise God, then you need to talk to Him about that. Are there issues that you need to confess or forgive? You must do it. Lay down the spirit of heaviness and put on the garment of praise. (Isa 61:3) It is an act of worship that will bless your soul.
Give God thanks for all He does for you.
We turn to God with so many needs. We ask so much. But are we grateful for answered prayer? How would you feel if you handed someone a gift and they grabbed it happily and ran off without thanking you? We do that a lot with God. We get so excited when the answers come that we forget that is was the love of God that moved for us.
Thankfulness does more for us than we think. Ten lepers cried out to Jesus for healing, and Jesus healed them. Only one came back to thank Him and worship Him. So Jesus answered and said, “Were there not ten cleansed? But where are the nine? Were there not any found who returned to give glory to God except this foreigner?” And He said to him, “Arise, go your way. Your faith has made you well.” (Luk 17:17-19)
Thankfulness gave the leper a greater healing than those who didn’t come back. Maybe they only got a partial healing. Maybe it was only temporary. I don’t know, but it looks like they didn’t get as much as the one with the grateful heart.
Never forget the One who loves you enough to answer your prayer. Be thankful for all that He does for you.
Another post on thankfulness: Thankfulness Is A Choice
Not enough words to praise God.
God is good, kind, wonderful, amazing, special, amazingly special. He is love. He is loving. He’s a lover. He is sweet, generous, thoughtful, and giving. He is merciful, forgiving, and forgetful (of my sins). He is big—really big. He is bigger than my imagination. He is powerful and strong. He can do what no one else can do. And He can do it every time.
Jesus is amazing. He is the greatest King, greater than all kings rolled into one really big king. He is magnificent and humble. He is beautiful and joyful and happy. He is Lord and sovereign over all things. He is savior and healer and deliverer. He is the first and last and everything in-between. He’s a flower and a lion and a lamb and a star. He is the Word and the Wisdom of all the ages. He is the best big brother and the closest friend.
The Holy Spirit is a genius. He is funny and quirky and cunning and sly. He is compassionate and thoughtful and delightful. He is helpful and the very best teacher ever. He is modest yet highly skilled and talented. He is the Spirit of skill and talent. He is awesome.
God is above all—so high above all that all can not come close. And I love Him.
Another post on praise: Don’t Let The Rocks Outdo Your Praise
Sing your praise to God.
Serve the Lord with gladness. Come before His presence with singing. (Psa 100:2) God is a lover and He wants His people to be lovers as well. He wants us to enjoy Him as much as He enjoys us. If you go before God in song, how can you not be full of joy? If course, I’m not talking about somber litanies that would put Him to sleep. I’m talking about joyful worship.
I really think God loves music. I think He loves instrumental music as well as singing. I think there will be a lot of music in heaven. He loves it when you sing to Him. It doesn’t have to be out of the hymn book. You can sing to Him in the shower with made-up words and made-up songs. You can sing the Psalms to Him. You can sing in tongues to Him. I think He just loves a heart full of music and praise. It’s the joy of the Lord being expressed back to Him.
Stop thinking that you never sing because you don’t have a good voice. That won’t fly with God. Make a joyful noise. It’s a command. Who cares if you’re not professional. Very few of us are. Allow yourself to praise Him in song and see how He fills your heart with joy.
Another post on verbal praise: The Sound That Matters