fruitage of the spirit's journal

Expressions from the Heart

The Ultimate Test of Faith

prayer02

Psalm 103:1, 2

“Bless the LORD, O my soul;

And all that is within me, bless His holy name!

Bless the LORD, O my soul,

And forget not all His benefits.

 

 

Lately I’ve been stirred to write about prayer, praise and worship. I hadn’t realized I was this focused on praising our mighty God until I flipped through the recent journals I’ve written; they’re about praising the One who delivers, who heals and who remembers us.  I suppose this special interest in writing about praising God is primarily because of the challenges I’ve been facing in recent months. Feeling overwhelmed by life’s demands, feelings of insecurity, not to mention constant struggle with imperfection is enough to make us surrender to defeat.  However, as challenges become mountainous, so does my desire to worship God; it’s an automatic reaction of my spirit.   Desperate situations tend to push some people over the edge…but a faithful believer tends to gravitate to praising God more passionately. When our faith is tested, do we praise God for the opportunity we have been given to experience His saving power? When we’re in fear, do we exalt in the God whom we know will deliver us through any circumstance?

 

The enemy wants nothing more than to keep us from praising our Creator. His tactics to draw us away from worship and praise include discouragement, dissentions among friends and family, confusion, temptation, doubt and fear (among others).  He is so sure of himself – his plan of attack is to be relentless enough that we crack under pressure and cause us to weaken our faith in the Lord. Despite the attacks, however, we can speak words of adoration to God where we are being carried to a triumphal place. We can be thankful because only God can provide the clarity we need to walk through the cloudiness in our circumstances. Nothing may seem clear to us at the time, but only God knows where we are and where we are going; He is guiding us every step of the way. Praising God while facing trials brings us to a peaceful rest because we know He is in control of our entire lives and the outcome of ALL situations.

 

The secret of praise is not to wait until we’re already experiencing peace. On the contrary, we praise regardless of our circumstances. When we are broken in spirit or feeling weary and defeated, that is the time to sing songs of praises louder and worship with more intensity than you we have! If you do, you can rest assure you will abide in God’s peace. The ultimate test of faith is not that we overcome our trials as thankful victors, but whether we can still thank and praise God while in the midst of the trials. It’s so easy to entreat God with our needs when we’re desperate, and to forget to praise Him along the way.  This is why Paul reminds us at 1Thess 5:17,18 to pray without ceasing, but always give thanks to God. Thanklessness is a trait of the unbeliever; to remain thankful and to praise God while in the midst of challenges is truly a test of faith to a believer. Let us hold fast to our faithfulness and worship our Lord and Savior no matter our circumstances! God bless you.

May 26, 2009 Posted by | Expressions | , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

   

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