Just as we are called to pray continually, we are called to praise continually.
Sometimes this is done easily. I love days when I can walk around with a praise song stuck in my head as I go throughout the day. Or when I wake up with a song in my heart that comes and goes throughout the day.
There are other times that I am just overwhelmed by gratefulness to God for who He is. I know that I have a Savior, Lord, Healer, Deliverer, Comforter and Friend (among many other attributes of God) that deserves my praise. When I discipline myself to think about who He is and what He has done in my life and through my life. I can’t help but praise Him.
But sometimes praise can be hard, but even then we are called to offer a sacrifice of praise (Hebrews 13:15). There are days that either we are just not in the mood. Or other days where our eyes get so focused on the circumstances surrounding us that we just don’t feel like praising. My pastor has said “circumstances can break us, or praise can break us out of our circumstances.”
Today was one of those days. It wasn’t even that I was having a bad day. When I woke up this morning as I was getting ready I turned on a television show onDemand that I am nostalgic about watching. Something in the show just really struck a chord and God used it to show me something in my life that up to this point I rarely acknowledge. What I wanted to do was to just stay at home and have a good cry.
Instead I disciplined myself and headed to church alone. I got there just as praise and worship was starting. God let me have a good cry still, but instead I was in His presence and His praise was on my lips. When I left, the things that had wanted to keep me from church were no longer important. My sacrifice of praise took my focus off that, and I ended up enjoying the praise and the message. I believe my discipline blessed the Lord, and my praise blessed us both.