Thursday, November 11, 2010

"Pray Or Praise?", by Pastor Kevin Lynch

We are admonished to pray. All God's children must pray. People have their own perceptions about what exactly that entails or how we should do it, but for the purposes of looking at it strictly as a spiritual discipline, we see that David prayed three times a day.

Psalm 55:17 - "Evening and morning and at noon will I utter my complaint and moan and sigh, and He will hear my voice."

Does this mean we should pray three times a day? Not at all. In fact, in the New Testament, Paul says the believer should pray without ceasing. Of course that's an impossibility unless we realize that Paul considered prayer more of an attitude than some rigorous religious ritual. Our life should be a prayer.

However, there's an interesting passage in Psalms, and also by David, which shows us that not only did he pray three times a day, but that he PRAISED SEVEN times a day!

David prayed three times, but he praised seven times. Hmm... Curious.

Psalm 119:164 - "Seven times a day and all day long do I praise You because of Your righteous decrees."

In fact, not JUST seven times a day, but ALL DAY LONG!

Understanding the premise of Paul on praying, it would not be presumptious to assume that David hit on something here.

Praise more, or as much, as you pray.

God inhabits the praises of His people (Psalm 22:3).

Here's a tidbit. Praise is not reserved for when only good things are going on in your life.

Praise is most effective when things are going wrong, maybe even horribly wrong.

That's when you want to praise God because that's when you need Him to inhabit (to visit, to enthrone Himself over your troubles).

God loves when we praise Him when He knows it's not easy for us to do so. God is not an egomaniac who needs to be reminded how great He is. God is impressed by the humility of the believer who shows appreciation and love to Him when He knows we are struggling. God is moved by that. God is spurred to action by that. God is inspired to dwell upon us by that.

Pray by all means, but praise Him more.

Go ahead. No matter how bad you feel right now, no matter what trial and difficulty you are facing today, lift up your arms, open your mouth and just PRAISE HIM in your own way! Thank Him! Tell Him you love Him! Tell Him you are expecting a great move of His indwelling Presence in you even at this very moment!

I guarantee it will change you in an instant!

Keepin' it Real,

Pastor Kevin <><

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