Practicing the Power of Praise

A little praise can go a long way.

It’s easy to get weighed down by all the things we do wrong. The struggles of life are hard enough without the second-guessing, “I wish I would haves”, and coping with disappointment. If that isn’t bad enough, there’s usually a criticism lurking around the corner ready to kick us when we’re already down.

Life’s hard.

Perhaps Westley is more to the point: “Life is pain highness. Anyone who says differently is selling something.”

We could all stand a little more encouragement–a little nudge to help us keep going.

It doesn’t come naturally to fallen humanity. In fact, it’s more characteristic of our sinful nature to continue to criticize and put others down in order to make ourselves feel better. It actually makes sense for us to respond this way; however, it should not be characteristic of the community of faith.

I believe that followers of Jesus can be the most powerful voice of hope.

We who were hopeless have received an eternal hope through Jesus Christ. Because of His perfect life, sacrificial death, and victorious resurrection, we can be filled with deep and genuine hope. Hope that God will see us through. Hope that one day all sickness and failures will cease. Hope that one day all will be made right. Such hope is not the imagination of dreamers but is firmly founded upon a Person – Jesus Christ.

Our God is a Person one who lifts us up.

You give me your shield of victory, and your right hand sustains me; you stoop down to make me great. (Psalm 18:35, NIV)

He stoops down to where we are and makes us great. He gets involved in our mess to make us clean. He enters the struggle with us to see us through. He is our hope.

If we have truly received the hope of Christ, then we should passionately give His hope to others. (Click to tweet)

Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise—the fruit of lips that openly profess his name. (Hebrews 13:15, NIV)

Because of what God has done for us, we should praise Him. Our practice of praise can shift our perspective from our predicament to our Provider. Practicing praise can remind us that we are not alone. Praising God keeps our hearts dependent upon Him.

So whether we feel like it or not, we should praise. It’s good for our hearts.

C.S. Lewis once said, “We praise what we love.” So our praise can also be applied to The Great Command – love God, love others. We might understand our need to praise God out of love for Him, but many of us struggle with praising others.

But we’re called to love others, too.

Instead of seeking to catch someone in a slip-up, we should be seriously looking for something to praise. Every moment; every opportunity.

  • Praise the custodian for a job well done.
  • Praise the person who annoys us for a good point they might make in a conversation.
  • Praise our spouse for how they handled a tough situation with the children.
  • Praise our children for showing concern for others.

Followers of Christ should always be seeking an opportunity to praise. (Click to tweet)

It reveals what we love.

Praise definitely takes practice. It’s something that is “new” to us through our faith in Jesus. But as we practice, we will begin to see some amazing things.

  • Praise will transform our relationship with God.
  • Praise will transform our relationship with others.

In honor of the God who stoops down to make us great, may we stoop down to make others great. Our praise can be that little nudge of encouragement–a gift of hope–we all desperately need. Practicing praise will be a testimony to the world of our faith and our devotion.

May we not just talk about The Great Command, but may we live it out as we practice the power of praise.

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Determine to take the rest of this day and intentionally seek out opportunities to praise those around you. At the end of the day, take a moment to share your story in the comments area below.

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