The Lord has been speaking to me even more lately about the power of praising and thanksgiving. I say 'even more' because it seems like this message is a constant for me.
What I am wondering is, 'Might there just be a powerful spiritual principle to this praising the Lord?'
One of my favorite Old Testament stories on the power of praise is in 2 Chronicles 20. Please read it if you have a chance to get the full effect of the story.
The verses that speak to me today are:
2 Chronicles 20:21,22
When he had consulted with the people, he appointed singers to sing to the Lord and praise Him in their holy [priestly] garments as they went out before the army, saying, Give thanks to the Lord, for His mercy and loving-kindness endure forever!
And when they began to sing and to praise, the Lord set ambushments against the men of Ammon, Moab, and Mount Seir who had come against Judah, and they were [self-] slaughtered;
When they began to sing and praise, the Lord set ambushments against their enemies!
For me, when by His grace, I am able to praise and thank Him for all He is in my life, all the blessings, all the mercy, the darkness flees! It is so easy to forget this when I feel so swallowed up by the concerns of life . . . the overwhelming task of discipling these children. . . health issues . . . loving the unlovable . . .hurts and heartaches . . . disappointments . . .
The last thing I feel like doing is praising God, and He gently reminds me of the power of praise. I choose praise, and even when I can't seem to, I pray for grace to praise. The darkness lifts, my heart feels lighter, and hope and joy return.
I think all we truly need can be summed up with one word. JESUS.
Enter into His gates with thanksgiving and a thank offering and into His courts with praise! Be thankful and say so to Him, bless and affectionately praise His name!