When my life seems dry and I’m thirsting for the Lord, when I’m searching for Him – I find Him in my praise. God inhabits and is enthroned upon our praise(Psalm 22:3). Praise comes in many forms, and it is all part of the fullness of praise – a faithful life lived for the glory and honor of God.
I stumble, I face temptations, I face challenges – and at times they may come at me in such massive waves that I might take my eyes off of Christ and look down at the waves and begin to sink. But I only have to remember that He is with me, the one that walks on waters, the one that calls the roaring seas when He speaks out, “Peace, be still. ” (Mark 4:39)
Yes, it is in those times that my weakness but His power is so evident (2 Corinthians 12:9). Temptations that would otherwise overcome me and drag me back into a prison of the chains of shame and guilt – they have no power over my life when I rest in His wings (Isaiah 54:17).
And when I feel alone and I don’t feel His presence, He is still there, He never leaves me and He never forsake me – but sometimes the distractions of this world make it difficult for me to remember that (Deuteronomy 31:6). Each time, though – I can find Him again in my heartfelt praise – whether it is singing praises to His name, studying and meditating on scriptures, praying with a broken and contrite spirit, serving and loving others, or faithfully resisting temptation with a repented heart.
Yes, I need to bring myself into remembrance of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the sacrifice that He has made to renew us into a relationship with God, to offer us this free gift of salvation which none deserve but all need, and to cleanse and renew our lives freeing us from the bondage of sin, shame, and guilt. (1 Corinthians 11:24)
Yes, like the example of Holy communion, it reminds me of the renewing nature of praising God with my life. It reminds me of the blood shed for me, that washes over me and is my protection and my salvation. It reminds me of His life sacrificed for me, as an example of undeserved love, forgiveness, and mercy. It reminds me that the enemy has no power over me any longer, and through Christ all things are possible. (Philippians 4:13)
Each day, the tools of the enemy that used to tap me without fail fall useless and harmless in front of me. I am not bold enough to consider them harmless, because I know the dangers and the damage they have done to my life in the past – so I avoid them and I resist them, because I want to be innocent as a dove and wise as a serpent (Matthew 10:16).
One day this struggle will be at an end, this race will be won, this fight will be over (2 Timothy 4:7). What can I hope for but to finish my course and fall at the feet of Jesus Christ, casting any crowns at His feet, because they are His, not mine – anything good done through me is His merciful work manifest in my life, because my own works are filthy. I am humbled that He would draw me near, that He would call me, and that I might be chosen to be a vessel worthy for His use – to the glory and honor of His name.