I recently attended a Bible study on the life of Joseph. I got busy and didn’t do my homework one week. I almost didn’t go. As a teacher myself, I expect my students to do their homework and be prepared for class. So I hated to show up to class unprepared. But I am so glad I went. The lesson was powerful. There was a section of the lesson that listed the names of God. Our teacher read scripture after scripture exalting God, who He is, His character. I sat there listening, letting it soak in. I was dumbfounded. I don’t know how else to describe how I felt except to say I was completely overwhelmed by my great God!
I spend so much of my prayer life talking to God about me. My life, my prayer requests, my family, my friends, my problems. Don’t get me wrong. All those things are important. The Lord wants us to pray about those things. He greatly cares about us. He loves to hear all about what’s going on in our lives. But gracious I can be so self-focused. I believe another very important aspect of prayer is praise and worship. There’s just something about getting my focus off of me, myself, and I, and focusing my attention on God. Remembering and acknowledging Who God is! Praising Him! Boasting in Him! Glorifying Him! Worshipping Him!
I think praise could be a game changer in our relationship with God because praising God changes us! It changes our perspective. We were created to glorify God!
Everyone who is called by my name, whom I created for my glory, whom I formed and made. Isaiah 43:7
Our problems and worries don’t seem as big when we stack them up against our great and powerful God! When we magnify Him, it gives us a higher perspective. Christine Caine said, “God is so big. Everything in the entire universe belongs to Him. The bigger God is in our lives and the more we meditate on Him and His Word, the smaller our problems become.”
I lift up my eyes to the mountains– where does my help come from? My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth. Psalm 121:1-2
With your help I can advance against a troop; with my God I can scale a wall. Psalm 18:29
We weren’t created to boast about ourselves.
Let someone else praise you, and not your own mouth; an outsider, and not your own lips. Proverbs 27:2
But we were created to boast about the Lord.
Therefore, as it is written: “Let the one who boasts boast in the Lord.” I Corinthians 1:31
This is what the LORD says: “Let not the wise boast of their wisdom or the strong boast of their strength or the rich boast of their riches, but let the one who boasts boast about this: that they have the understanding to know me, that I am the LORD, who exercises kindness, justice and righteousness on earth, for in these I delight,” declares the LORD. Jeremiah 9:23-24
He deserves our worship, our honor, our praise. He is so worthy! Oh if I would spend more of my time in His presence and in His Word, focusing on Him, who He is, His character, His ways. I don’t do it as often as I should, but I want to change that.
Praise is so important! We were created to praise and honor the Lord! The heavens praise Him. The angels praise Him. The sun and moon and stars praise Him. How much more should we?
The other night I was putting my 5 year old daughter to bed. We went through our little bedtime routine. We said our bedtime prayers. I prayed then Callie prayed. Tears filled my eyes as I listened to her last words to God. She prayed, “God, thank You for letting us have You.”
I was once again overwhelmed by Him. What a prayer! What a God! Not only do we get to worship our great God–we get to have Him!
I hope you are overwhelmed by Him today!
Praise the Lord. Praise the Lord from the heavens; praise him in the heights above. Praise him, all his angels; praise him, all his heavenly hosts. Praise him, sun and moon; praise him, all you shining stars. Psalm 148:1-3
Great are You Lord, and most worthy of praise. You are to be feared above all gods, for the gods of the nations are idols, but You made the heavens. Splendor and majesty are before You. Strength and glory are in Your sanctuary. Psalm 96:4-6
Holy, holy, holy is the Lord Almighty. The whole earth is full of Your glory. Isaiah 6:3
O Lord, God Almighty, who is like You? You are mighty, O Lord, and Your faithfulness surrounds You! Psalm 89:8
Since ancient times no one has heard, no ear has perceived, no eye has seen any God besides You, who acts on behalf of those who wait for You. Isaiah 64:4