When I think of the word praise I imagine a rider crossing the finish line with hands raised and 1 finger pointed to the sky giving praise to God. Now, take a minute, and imagine a rider doing this during the race. 1/3 of the way into the race the rider summits a big climb and takes their hands off their handlebars to raise them to the sky and point 1 finger to God. Praise be to God for summiting this climb. Or, even crazier, you see the rider on the side of the course, tire off, and they are working on the bike. The rider is raising their hands to the sky with 1 finger to God. Praise be to God for this mechanical malfunction!
How ridiculous would this look? Right?! In his book Papa Prayer, Larry Crabb hits on the topic of Praise:
Praise fastens on hope. Everything will be all right - later, not now. But God is here now. Nothing can go wrong that will not one day be straightened - not Parkinson's, not rape, not bankruptcy, not even moral failure. So we praise in hope more passionately than we beg for change.
Everything will be all right - later, not now. But God is her now. We must praise in hope more passionately than we beg. The rider on the side of the road is more likely to be begging God for a miracle (begging for a change) than pointing to the sky (hoping more passionately).
Everyone sees it. God’s
work is the talk of the town.
Be glad, good people! Fly to God!
Good-hearted people, make praise your habit.
What they're saying is, praise God in the good and the bad. Make praise your habit. Let Him shine through you in all that you do. Sure you might not win the race, but by giving praise to Him in the bad you might just win 1 for His team!
Further Study - Take 1 verse per day, read it, and let God speak to you: Revelation 1:9-10 | Exodus 15:1-2 | Numbers 6:24-26 | 1 Chronicles 16:9 | Psalm 7:17 | Romans 15:7 | James 5:13
Thanks and God Bless!