As I woke up this morning thanking the Lord, outside my bedroom window, the sky looked a riot of colours and so beautiful.
My hands wrapped around the cup of warm tea, with its tantalising fragrance of lemon grass heightening all of my senses. I watched and heard the birds chirping sweetly, the mynahs, the parrots, the pigeons all fluttering so happily in the sky without a care in the world, the squirrels scampering about on a long wire from one building to another, the cat below stretching itself lazily from its sleep, the rustle of the wind and the swaying of the coconut trees to and fro.
The wind blowing on my face with its cool touch made me realise how awe-inspiring God’s creation is. The world was awake, this remarkable world that the Creator had fashioned with His own Hands was just so spectacular to behold. The bright colours of the flowers bathing themselves in the soft rays of the sun – each flower wonderfully created and intricately clothed – made me ponder, that not even King Solomon in all his glory was adorned like one of these magnificent flowers.
How awesome is God’s creation and how wonderful are His works! It seemed like each one of these beautiful creatures were up and about, praising God in their own beauty.
The Lord God Almighty spoke a word and the world came into existence, out of His Righteous Hand He formed man in His own image, each one of us so special and precious in His sight, created uniquely and wondrously for His Glory.
As I gazed upon the beauty of the flora and fauna around me, I was reminded of Psalms 150:6, which says “Let everything that has breath! Praise the Lord”. Wait a minute! Everything that has breath? Well , I was alive and breathing, and that was enough reason to Praise the Lord.
Looking up at the sky, I pondered over those words and realised how precious ‘life’ is and how often, we take for granted the things that other people are deprived of, or don’t have, or even lost opportunities, the little things that are so insignificant to us but yet, is of utmost importance to others.
Let us look at what the Bible says: “Because your love is better than life, my lips will glorify you. I will praise you as long as I live, and in your name I will lift up my hands. (Psalms 63:3-4)
Praise Him for what? There are several reasons to praise the Lord.
Praise His marvellous creation and Praise Him for this life
We should praise Him for what He has done, for giving us this beautiful world we live in, the privilege of beholding it’s splendour, the snow-capped mountains that stand tall in all its majesty, the lush green meadows where lambs and kids frolic and gambol about in a gleeful excess of energy, the beauty of nature, the magnificent sunset, the gentle breeze, the sound of the brook that trips and falls over stones on its way, the glistening of the raindrops on roses and the silvery misty dew at the rise of dawn, the pretty butterflies, the buzzing bees, but most of all, for His Son Jesus Christ, who gave his very life to provide the way of redemption for us – to empower God’s great plan of salvation, so we might all be saved. Jesus said, “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life”. The life that we now have and live is because of His great sacrifice and love for us.
Praise facilitates access to God
Obviously, it’s the blood of Jesus that paves the way for our forgiveness from sin and relationship with God (Hebrews 10:19). That being said, our perpetual praise provides a clear and unhindered access into His holy presence. Therefore, “Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise” (Psalm 100:4).
Praise is where God lives
Wait a minute, isn’t God omnipresent – everywhere, all the time? Absolutely! Yet His presence is especially intense in an atmosphere of praise. The Bible says God is “Enthroned upon the praises of Israel” (Psalm 22:3). The Lord delights in our praise and worship.
Praise chases away despair
There’s no better way to beat the blues than to change our focus from self to God. Such a shift produces “the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of the spirit of heaviness (Isaiah 61:3). When you feel down and low, when you cannot praise or even utter a pray, turn your praise on through a song, play a song instead and just worship, you will find that praise soothes your soul and heals all your wounds when you just praise His name.
Praise is an effective weapon against the devil
I firmly believe that Satan, once the good angel Lucifer and God’s praise and worship leader (Isaiah 14), was kicked out of heaven and doomed to destruction due to his desire to be like God. He has hated praise ever since because of its reminder of what he gave up and can’t regain. Praise enables you to grow more stronger in your faith in God, knowing that with God all things are possible. When praise arises, strongholds are loosened, bondages are broken, bodies are healed, hearts are touched, lives are transformed and there is freedom to worship God in spirit and in truth.
God is worthy of it. “The Lord is great and worthy of our praise”. While it’s obviously good to praise and encourage those around us, God alone deserves our heartfelt worship and supreme allegiance. Remembering all that the Lord has done in the past and having the full assurance that He will do it again, gives us hope. We Praise God, for He is truly worthy of it all.
Praise God in hard times
How can you turn your eyes to God and sing his praises when life is hard? Where do you find words of praise and thanksgiving when your heart is full of sorrow and struggle? Is it possible to praise God when times are tough?
In Psalm 34, David reminds us that we should praise God through the good times and bad. Praise should fill our hearts every day, no matter our circumstances – especially when we are walking through seasons of great trials. Praise God in the storms, through the battles, and when life gets hard. Make the choice to fill your heart with words of praise and thanksgiving for God. Turn your eyes to him and allow him to surround you with his love and strength. We must praise God even when it’s seems the hardest. It’s only in those broken moments that He builds us, He strengthens us, He assures us, He sustains us, He protects us and promises to be with us even unto the end of the world (Matthew 28:20)
When you feel surrounded, fight your battles with praise
When the struggles begin to close in, you may find yourself without the words to pray, unable to find those words of prayer and praise. When I don’t have the words to pray, I turn to Bible verses about praising God and use those to pray through God’s Word. We have to start somewhere. Begin with a Bible verse of praise, a pre-written prayer, or even a worship song. I am reminded of a song, “This is how I fight my battles”- a song that strengthens me, encourages and gives me hope in God’s power, that even though the battles seem to close in around me, I will always remember that God is surrounding me!
No matter what we face in our lives, the different season that we go through, the good times, the not-so-good times, the secret storms, the dry seasons, the failed marriage, the bitter divorce, the waiting-period, the financial crunch, the prolonged illness, the lessons learnt- some painful, some life-changing. In the midst of all the confusion, the pain, the brokenness and uncertainty, Let us be certain that God is always with us, let us just pause to praise His name and sing this song…
Praise His name
When you’re up against a wall and your mountain seems so tall
And you realise that life’s not always fair
You can run away and hide, let the old man decide
Or you can change your circumstances with a prayer
When everything falls apart praise His name
When you have a broken heart raise your hands and say
Lord, You’re all I need, You’re everything to me
And He’ll take the pain away
When it seem you’re all alone praise His name
When you feel you can’t go on just raise your hands and say
Greater is He that is within me
And you can praise the hurt away if you’ll just praise His name
Oh, you can overcome by the blood of the lamb
And by the word of your testimony
You’ll see the darkness go as your faith begins to grow
You’re not alone so how can you be lonely…
So, as children of God, we not only have something to sing about, but SOMEONE to praise. So, whether it’s privately or corporately, musically, verbally or otherwise, let the praises begin.
Let everything that has breath, Praise the Lord!
By Phoebe Samuel
Phoebe is a beloved wife and a loving mother to two wonderful sons. She has been involved in Christian ministry for the last 25 years. Apart from sharing the word, singing, praying and counselling, she enjoys reaching out to people. She desires that non-believers and new believers should be touched by Jesus. She is also a freelance creative writer, a choral singer and an avid reader who loves Jesus with all her heart.