It’s easy for most Christians to praise God when things are going great, when the blessings are pouring in and everyone gets sick but “me”. It’s easy to say how great life is when we have a good job, a desirable home and an affordable new car. Most of us would agree that to “Praise the Lord” in these times is easy to do. But what about the times when things aren’t so good, when the blessings don’t seem to come but the sickness does, and when our home is not our greatest desire and our car is held together with rust? For many, it isn’t easy to praise God in the bad times.
And this is because they don’t realize who God is or why they’re praising Him, or the fact that blessings come when we praise Him—or why they come. They don’t recognize God as being the most Holy One who loves us and has given His life for us, and who lives in the presence of our praises. They tend to focus on what they don’t have, and inadvertently give their glory to the author of their problems (by complaining), rather than to God who has set them free from sin.
We live in a corrupt world that’s laden with sin, which is the cause of all sickness and tribulation. And that’s because this world has been invaded by an angry devil who is doing all he can do to make life on earth so miserable that we would curse God. This is his sole purpose and it’s directed at you and me.
- The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.—John 10:10
And yet at the same time and in this world, God has blessed us with an opportunity to be delivered from the sin and redeemed back to Him. Jesus was born to be our Savior; He paid the ultimate punishment for our sins on the cross so we could be forgiven. We can have the old nature of this world removed and be filled with His Spirit. Jesus freed us from the clutches of sin and sickness and He deserves all of our praises!
We won’t live a stress-free life filled with riches and perfect health once we’re saved. On the contrary, Jesus said that we would have tribulation—(John 16:33) and that we would be persecuted because we are standing for Him and against the enemy of this world.
- And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.—Matthew 13:13
- Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.—2 Timothy 3:12
We praise God in the midst of our problems because we want the atmosphere of defeat from our burdens to be cast down, and we want to give glory and praise to God because of His love and faithfulness towards us. We praise God because we love Him and because He is our reason for living. We praise God because we’ve studied the scriptures and we know Him and we know His will for our lives, and we know that God is faithful and will do the things He said He will do.
- So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.—Isaiah 55:11
- God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.—1 Corinthians 1:9
We know that we live in a corrupt world, but we praise God because we know that during our personal troubles God is with us and will give us the wisdom and the strength to get through them. But we need to focus on Him and not on the problems.
- But the Lord your God ye shall fear; and he shall deliver you out of the hand of all your enemies.—2 Kings 17:39
- I sought the Lord, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.—Psalm 34:4
We praise God because we don’t want to give the enemy glory for the burdens that he’s put upon us. We praise God because we believe Him and we trust Him when He tells us to cast our burdens onto Him—1 Peter 5:7. We praise God because the more praise we give to Him, the less praise we give to our enemy. We praise God because He lives in the center of our praises and we want to be in His presence.
James 4:7 says to resist the devil and he will flee. We are not to give him credit or glory for our problems, but rather, we are to bring God’s presence in through our praises. And when we praise God, the enemy flees.
- But thou art holy, O thou that inhabitest the praises of Israel.—Psalm 22:3
Our rejoicing in the Lord is not because of our problems, but in spite of our problems. Our rejoicing comes because we love God and because He loves us and He is faithful. Our praises are to our risen King who has already defeated the enemy and redeemed us from the curse of the law. And although problems will come simply because we live in this world, we have the confidence that God will bring us through them all.
Jesus is about to return as King to reign in perfect harmony and peace. This is real! It’s going to happen and sooner than most of us think! Let’s be ready to receive Him regardless of the bad times by singing and shouting our praises to Him because He alone is worthy!
- Praise ye the Lord. Praise the Lord, O my soul. While I live will I praise the Lord: I will sing praises unto my God while I have any being.—Psalm 146:1-2
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