July 23rd

 

Praise and Worship - Psalm 145

1 I will extol You, my God, O King; And I will bless Your name forever and ever. 2Every day I will bless You, And I will praise Your name forever and ever. 3Great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised; And His greatness is unsearchable. 4One generation shall praise Your works to another, And shall declare Your mighty acts. 5I will meditate on the glorious splendor of Your majesty, And on Your wondrous works. 6Men shall speak of the might of Your awesome acts, And I will declare Your greatness. 7They shall utter the memory of Your great goodness, And shall sing of Your righteousness. Psalm 145:1-7 NKJV  

Praise and worship is an important part of our relationship with God.  Both help us focus on God and remind us of his eternal perspective on life. Praise and worship also establish a type of “spiritual garment” that helps protect us in spiritual warfare (Isaiah 61:3; warfare praise).    

Praise and worship begin with truthfulness in our heart.  Jesus said, “God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth” (John 4:24 KJV).  To worship in truth, we need to have a repentant heart. When we’re harboring secret or unconfessed sin, we’re placing a lie between God and us because all sin is based on lies. Whenever sin has occurred, it is important for us to confess what we’ve done to God and ask for forgiveness. 1 John 1:9 assures us that if we confess our sin, God is faithful and will forgive our sin and purify us from it.  We can then approach God in pure worship.  David wrote, “The LORD is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth” (Psalm 45:18 NIV). 

Singing is the most natural way to praise and worship God.  Singing to the Lord and to other believers is something that should be a normal part of our walk with God.  Paul wrote, 19Speak to one another with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord, 20always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ” (Ephesians 5:19-20 NIV).  Paul described an intimacy with other believers and God that seems to transcend a simple singing of hymns in a church service. In fact, worship is to be a lifestyle for us that overflows into our relationships with the people we know. 

The place to start developing a lifestyle of worship is in our quiet times.  Too often quiet times consist of only a short prayer and some Bible study. When we begin to realize who God is, we’ll find it quite appropriate to include worship in the times we meet with him. For example, I’ve found that singing quietly along with a praise CD is a wonderful way to start my quiet times.   

Singing to the Lord may not always be possible, as some early risers may not want to wake the rest of their family or roommates.  There are some alternatives that can work just as well.  David mentioned that declaring God’s works is also a form of praise and worship: “Men shall speak of the might of Your awesome acts, And I will declare Your greatness” (Psalm 145:6 NKJV).  An application of this could be to read a psalm quietly, as the book of Psalms is a collection of praise and worship songs.  For example, the passage of Psalm 145 above makes an excellent worship passage to read.   

Another way to praise and worship is to tell others about God’s works. David said, “One generation shall praise Your works to another, And shall declare Your mighty acts.”(Vs. 4 above).  We might feel awkward at first in telling our family, friends, co-workers and strangers about God and his works.  If we swallow any pride we have and talk about God with others, we just might plant seeds in those people’s lives that will be fruitful for God’s kingdom.   

I remember how I felt uncomfortable even mentioning God in conversation at my old job.  I feared what my co-workers might think or say.  God helped me overcome that fear and I discovered that it became easier to talk about God the more I did it. Granted, there’s always a risk that people may reject us for talking about God.  They may ridicule us and even persecute us, but God will be glorified even through that.  We can count it as joy because we will be blessed as a result (Matthew 5:11-12).   

Questions for further thought:

Prayer:

“Heavenly Father, I praise you for being my God and King.  You alone are worthy of all praise and honor. Please forgive me for any shortfall in my life from praise and worship.  Please forgive me for any sins that I have tolerated and/or hidden.  I confess them to you now: _______ (list).  Please cleanse me from that sin.  I receive the cleansing of the blood of Jesus.  I worship you now, Lord, in spirit and in truth. Please help me to develop a lifestyle of praise and worship that flows from my heart.  Thank you, Lord for redeeming me from destruction and crowning me with lovingkindness.  To you be all honor, and glory and power forever!  Amen.”