Friday, November 12, 2010

Enter With Thanksgiving

“Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts

with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name.”

Psalm 100:4 (NIV)

The writer of this psalm tells us in one sentence how we are to approach God. He tells us to enter thankfully to count it a privilege to enter God’s realm. We are to enter praising Him for even the smallest thing.

We all can recall times when we praised God for His goodness to us. A few months ago, a friend’s mother, a Cancer patient, had a difficult time when the doctor’s had to set a new pick line. The lady’s blood count was too low. When I heard the story, I recognized we didn’t have to go through anything like that 14 years ago when my stepmother had her last round of Breast Cancer. I also realized I might not have praised God for the specific deed of keeping her blood count good.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Thanks In All Circumstances

“Give thanks in all circumstances.”

1 Thessalonians 5:18. . .

Paul continues by telling the Thessalonians and us to express thanks in all. situations. Christians have wrestled with this verse ever since he wrote it.

The key here is with the two letter word, ‘in’.

God doesn’t expect us to give thanks for all circumstances in which we find ourselves. We could do a lot of damage if we counseled people to give thanks for their hardship or their loved one’s major illness.

We need to recognize that all we have, all we are, and all we go through have God as the source. He allows the tough times to enter our lives. He promised to ‘never leave us or forsake us.’ (REF) We have to learn to thank Him for being there with us as we walk through the problem no matter what it is.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Invited to Praise

“Come let us sing for joy to the Lord,

let us shout aloud to the rock of our salvation.

Let us come before him with thanksgiving

and extol him with music and song.” Psalm 95: 1-2

When we receive an invitation to a gathering how do we react? Are we happy, indifferent, or blasé? This passage is an invitation to praise the Lord our God.

In this passage we are asked to praise Him by singing for joy, by shouting an ‘amen’ or ‘praise the Lord’ or ‘Hallelujah’ When we praise God in worship we become a participant in the honoring of Who He Is.

What would happen if we each chose to worship our God with vigor? Would He be pleased? I believe so.

At the bottom of our church’s bulletin is the statement, “This service is subject to change by the leading of the Holy Spirit.” It does happen.

What would our personal lives look like if we were to praise God in our daily lives? Would we have difficult times as often in our homes? Would we be as subject to stress induced disorders? I think these conditions would lessen.

Fear, Courage: God Is With Us  Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the LORD ...