Monday, July 7, 2008

30 Days of Praise - Day 1

I was blog surfing when I saw a comment on a friend's blog from another blogger (who I don't know) talking about 30 days of praise. I went to the blogger's page and didn't really see what she was referring to, but I left inspired just by the thought of it.

Lately I have felt pressed of the Lord that I need to be working harder at focusing on being worshipful and thankful. It keeps coming up for me, in fact I was working on highlighting all the places in my bible that I came across where it talked about "be thankful," or "give thanks," and such, but had kind of gotten off track on it.

The other morning I was watching an old episode of "Touched by An Angel." I believe the title of the episode was "Then Sings My Soul." It was the story of a man who had taken over a factory owned by his deceased father, and the business was on the brink of failure, full of unhappy employees looking to their new leader and finding everything hopeless. Somehow Monica, the angel, comes to discover what is missing, prayer and praise. As she herself prays for guidance a blind man senses a change, "something electric" in that place - the way is "used to be" when the man's father ran the business. Monica then realizes that what is missing is acknowledging God in that place.

Tess, another angel comes in with the specific assignment to fix the discovered problem. She begins to sing and praise God and many of the employees begin to join in, touched by the change in the atmosphere. It's then that Tess very pointedly indicates that they need to realize God's presence has not changed. God was always there, in the midst of them, but it is their awareness and acknowledgement of His presence that has made the difference in their situation. It doesn't turn out with perfection and light from there, no they continue on the side of melodrama as shortly after so many of the attitudes have changed, the factory blows up, trapping many of the employees, including the son of the founder who has yet to see things as the rest. But of course in true Hollywood fashion Monica is able to convince even him that God loves him and wants to be there for him, and even he rises out of the ashes singing the praises of God.

What captured me in the midst of a sappy Hollywood story was the truth about praising God. It changes our perspective, takes our eyes off of our circumstances and places them back on our God. Peter was able to walk on water when his eyes were fixed on Jesus. And the Bible says that the Lord inhabits the praises of His people. Like in the days of the Ark of the Covenant, when the presence of the Lord would come in and sit on "the mercy seat, so still today God comes in and seats Himself upon the praises of His people. I've even heard people tell stories of smelling a sweet aroma in the midst of praise. How awesome would that be?

So today I praise the Lord. I praise Him because even in the midst of my ineptness He uses me in His kingdom. And I praise Him for the fact that He loves me in spite of my failures not because of my successes. I am thankful that even when I feel like giving up on Him, He is never willing to give up on me or let me stray too far from Him, He is faithful to pursue me and draw me back.

I am thankful that in a world where life is uncertain, His word and His promises are ALWAYS sure and can be trusted, held to as an anchor for my life and my soul. I praise Him because He has a plan and purpose for my life, and not one that He's making up as we go along but that He established for me before I was even conceived. God is good and faithful and I will praise His holy name!

Hey, all you other bloggers, feel free to join in the praise! He is worthy!

1 comment:

LuLu (a.k.a. Cyndi) said...

Diana, that is so funny! I have been meaning to email you too because I do believe the Lord Birthed this is me and I thought of you. Although I don't think this is necessarily the only thing he is doing, I believe its part of it. I am looking forward to keeping up with your blog and I may have to steal some things since you are such an eloquent writer!