Wednesday, 13 April 2016

Overflowing Gratitude

Overflowing Gratitude
Psalm 9
                Have you ever felt the need to praise God? Not just on Easter
morning when you realize the joy of Christ’s resurrection for yourself but on an ordinary day. What has prompted this need, this urge to praise God?
                Psalm 9 begins “I will praise you O Lord, with all my heart, I will tell of all your wonders.” (NIV). Leslie Brandt puts it this way: “I feel so exuberant I simply must express or explode” What an option—express praise to God or explode from within. But why the need to praise God?
                The Psalmist responds because God was with them and judged righteously against enemies. God destroyed the wicked, rebuked the nations and blotted out their names for ever. Enemies have faced endless ruin and God reigned forever. God reigns and so all who believe must praise God. God is the one who will judge the world in righteousness and justice. And those who know Him with trust in him because God will never forsake them.
                Therefore because God will always be with us we are to sing the praises of God; to proclaim loudly His deeds to the people. God doesn’t ignore his people but lifts us up and reminds us of His love.
                But do we know how much God loves us? God lifts us up in order that we might praise Him. God makes it possible to sing praise because He is with us always. There will be people who hurt themselves by forgetting God. And there are those whose needs will not be forgotten nor will hope be lost. “Is it any wonder my heart overflows with gratitude to God?”
How often do you consciously praise God? That is you offer your voice to sing about how God has touched your heart and life. Do you sing of your love for God and God’s love for you?  You might respond well it depends; It depends upon what you have been experiencing and what you are going through at the moment. It depends upon what you feel you need you should do when we praise God.
For some people praising God is not only singing or playing music; it is using the gifts and talents and skills and learning they have been given or acquired to praise and do the work necessary for the church and for the furtherance of God’s kingdom. One who does the finances may not be able to sing well but they are still praising God in what they are doing. And sometimes we limit ourselves in how we praise God. For many singing is how praise is done; standing up arms high to the sky and singing to uplifting music. For others it is simply saying quietly in one’s heart—“I love you God and I lift my voice.”
But no matter how you do it—do it! Praising God is worshiping God, and God likes receiving our praise. And when we do so, we are blessed through the Spirit which comes to us.

Wonderful God we praise you name and we rejoice in all that you do for us. We may not always feel the need to express or explode our joy to you but we praise you any ways. Give us reasons again and again to offer you praise so that we might feel the joy of your love forever. Amen.

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