Praise

May 6, 2016 at 12:45 am (Devotionals, Remodeling the Mind, Thoughts to Ponder, WSGD Newes) (, , , , , , , , , , , )

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What is the essence of Praise?

Is it just knowing God is? How often does it come easy when He paints a wondrous sky? When He does anything to make us smile? How does one apply the sacrifice of praise? This question lays heavy on my heart theses days. Almost every believer I know (almost) doesn’t seem to grasp the concept of sacrificial praise. When asked in a poll, nine out of ten believers could not quote a scripture that speaks of sacrificial praise. May seem rather inconsequential unless you realize how often its referenced in the Word. 218 times the word sacrifice is in the Word, half of them include praise with them. In the half that doesn’t refer to praise directly with it, it gives strong indications of it being in conjuction to or related to, or a result of. ..pretty incredible.

To sacrifice means to give something up. To praise means to lift something or someone up in exaltation. Put together, as the Word repeatedly states it, we sacrifice the opposite of praise for praise of God . After all it would hardly be a sacrifice to praise God when I’m happy. It would seem these days that we have this assumption that we are entitled to our feelings. So praise can come after I’ve had my pout, rant, disappointment, hurt, anger – especially if it comes on the heals of injustice. Yet as I enter into the presence of God, and He teaches me, He clearly says to sacrifice my feelings and with all my heart, mind, and soul praise Him, especially when I can hardly dredge up a thin whisp of His praise-worthiness, this is true sacrifice. It requires faith. Faith in the God who is working at all times to and for the good of those that love Him. This is a foundational truth that must be lived. How better to live it than to practice it? Or do it. Something can’t live, as dead words on a page, it must become active to live. Dying to oneself will always come with the sacrifice of one’s feelings. Not the ignorance of them, or denial, but the will turning towards the Father and actively willing itself into the Kingdom of Praise. It’s the arm wrestle of me and my view verses God and His. Every promise He has made can be used to contradict a complaint from human lips. Yes, every single one. Noone keeps their promises like God, not one.

Someone once said, “I really can’t see one thing today that is worth praising“. For those in throws of this temptation let me share a perspective. Everyday, in order for the day to be called a day, the sun must have risen(God be praised), in order for one to be able to call a day a day, one must have been given breath to enter into it(God be praised). One may argue, “what if I wish God had taken me Home instead?” Simply put, then your will has not entered into His, for if you were willed to go Home to be with Him, your breaths would have ceased and there you would be. So. ..sacrifice your will to the sovereign God you say you believe in and thank Him for the day He has made, ask Him to change your heart and open your eyes to the gift of the day you are in and thank Him for your purpose in His will to be here, now.

What does it cost you to call yourself a follower of Christ? Have you been stoned (with real rocks, not weed) for your belief in Him? Do you know the sacrifice of not doing the thing you think you can’t live without, just because He said “Live without it.” Do we truly know that when He says that He is prophecying? Literally, if you give it up, you will really and truly live, actively putting His Word to action, faith being a real live thing working inside you. This is Life, the Life Yeshua (Jesus) came to give. The Life He lived, and now we can by the power of His Spirit live too. I can honestly say I never succeed at such sacrifice, until I’ve admitted my defeat in ability and asked for the Spirit to give me praise instead. I can’t drudge praise up on my own. So, you see the denial of the feelings that cause complaint, pout, rage, bitterness, doubt, comparison, etc – may indeed be acknowledged but not lived instead they must be sacrificed, exchanged for what we don’t possess. The only reason we reason to our advantage to keep our feelings and “work through them”, is simply because we don’t want to let them go. Not one person has ever worked through their feelings leading to life, faith in God. Read Hebrews 11. There is no mention of one hint of one person of Faith who “worked through their feelings But had faith. Not one. Every single one, sacrificed their feelings and turned towards God to obtain faith. Often our feelings are cronic lairs. Why? Because they are hitched to our comfort, our perspective, our desires, our failures, the fallen nature of this world. But, what about delight, joy, love, compassion. ..aren’t theses feelings, you ask? Depends. Depends on Who gives them to you. Do you delight at the sunset? Any question as to Who gets the credit for it? And love? This is constantly being defined by feelings, it’s not a feeling, Love is and always will be a choice. Love is sacrifice, if you don’t sacrifice for the one you say you love, you don’t love them. To sacrifice in love, one must give up something of themselves for the other. It must cost something. Another long subject for another blog, but love is not a feeling, it’s a result of feelings being yielded to Love Himself. What does the Word say about joy? I won’t answer this for you, look it up, study it, it’s not a feeling we come by as good little human beings in and of ourselves. All things good – every single good thing ever only and ever will come from God. If you experience it, thank Him for it, cause we don’t get joy without Him or compassion, or delight. One may argue; “but non-believers delight in sunsets“. So? This is evidence of the contrary of what is true about sunsets? Whether one believes or not, God made sunsets, and if one delights at one, they delight in Him, whether they acknowledge it or not. The Author of the sunset does not change, and why wouldn’t He give delight to anyone for admiring His work? That is the amazing thing about God, He doesn’t wait to be who He is, do what He does, on us to believe Him or acknowledge Him. Never has, never will. He came while we were yet sinners, remember? Yes, indeed, even the sinners are given delight in the things that come from God alone.
But, praise, sacrificial praise, this is only given to them that believe and acknowledge Him. Those without Him are quite incapable of faith. But lest, we who follow and live for God be proud, we, too are incapable without Him. The difference is, we who have let Him take over our lives, have been given the power of the Spirit of God to do the things of God. So we see, it all comes from Him, not us. This why, I believe, that nine out of every ten of those believers in that poll, had no clue about sacrificial praise. It’s the stumbling stone we trip over, living a life we get credit for vs. living a life He gets credit for. Indeed it’s a contradiction to even say, I can live my own life. My life is dead if lived for me. Only Life and God go hand in hand. Without Him, death is the only result of anything.

I belabor, but I do so at the lead of the God of Life. Read up about sacrificial praise in His Word, ask Him to expand upon it into your limbs. You’ll find, much of the walk with Him will have this sacrificial praise as it’s hallmark. It takes faith to praise God when bills are due and money is no where to pay, it takes faith to believe He is working in such detail while the over due notices are stamped out. It takes faith to praise God for accidents and floods. It takes faith to praise God for hiccups and delays. Faith is trust in action. A moving, living trust that moves our lips towards praise and our hearts, minds and bodies in line with them. Every single person on the planet has trust issues. Don’t claim that as special or unique to you. Hint, God never said to trust anyone but Him. Most the time we have trust issues, it’s because we trusted the people He made, or ourselves instead of Him in the first place. Trust issues are cured only by trusting only in God. Faith can only come from a living active trust in God. Sacrificial praise is the epitome of faith!

Hebrews 11:1
Trusting is being confident of what we hope for, convinced about things we do not see.

Hebrews 13:15
Through Him, therefore, let us offer God a sacrifice of praise continually. For this is the natural product of lips that acknowledge His Name.

Psalms 50:14-15
Offer thanksgiving as your sacrifice to God, pay your vows to the Most High, and call to Me when you are in trouble; I will deliver you, and you will honor Me.

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♡ Grace and peace in Yeshua the Messiah ♡

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Thanks Giving

November 18, 2012 at 4:58 am (WSGD Newes) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , )

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Rarely do we have a “holiday” or celebration with two actions, verbs, forms of worship conjoined into one word. Thanks. Giving.

There is always much emphasis on the first word. Thanks. Some people choose to name something they are thankful for everyday of November. Or at least until the end of the actual day. They usually start out as: “Today, I am grateful/thankful for…” Nothing wrong with gratitude or thankfulness! Good things these are. A command by God to do  – daily, hourly, minutely. At least that’s how I interpret always and continually. November gets the highlight, like pew-fillers on Easter Sunday. Or the thoughts poured out into material gifts on Christmas.
There are the other parts of those sweet scriptures that jump out too. See if you can see them “hopping” up and down 🙂

Ephesians 5:20
always give thanks for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Yeshua the Messiah (Jesus Christ).

Colossians 3:17
That is, everything you do or say, do in the name of the Lord Yeshua, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.

1 Thessalonians 5:18
In everything give thanks, for this is what God wants from you who are united with the Messiah Yeshua.

Ok, so I helped the wee words hop off a little…(big grin). Giving thanks rarely finds a empty heart. BUT! Giving thanks for everything?? Wow, that’s a tall order. How in heavens name does one thank God in the name of Yeshua for…constipation…root canals…acne…hatred…violence…murder? There must be more to thankfulness than feelings and lip service here. Maybe the answer is hidden in the word give.
Let’s see…how else is give “paired up” in scripture? Hmmm…the most obvious is for-give. Perhaps there’s more to the word give than English supplies as substance? In Hebrew give is defined as: To make a present; to present a gift; to grant, allow or bestow by formal action. In Hebrew thought, give, gift and love are all connected, almost inseparable! To forgive is a bestowing of unearned allowance, acceptance, love. To give thanks is a gift of love and acceptance of God’s goodness, even if what we see as hard, wrong, unforgivable, hard to accept; we give thanks for what we don’t see…the good God is, does, and will bring out of it. Giving is the rather “slip under the radar” part of Thanks-giving. Its easy to find something we like to be thankful for. But – everything? Whoooaa! I just don’t feel thankful for so many things, namely because those things make me feel bad. So I see, what a gift indeed it must be to God when I tell my feelings to take the back seat, and with my whole will thank God out of love for Him for everything. It says, “What You say is truth Lord, You cover all sin, You make it all good, You have the mightiest power and “upper-hand” in all things. I trust You, I love You, and my flesh fails to submit with feelings but I will because of Yeshua, in Yeshua choose actions and speech that represent that Truth regardless of how I feel.”
Its a powerful gift, and a gift that God loves and keeps the thanks-giving going all year long, not just November.

A note:
Something that profoundly changed my understanding of when scripture reads: in Yeshua’s (Jesus’s) name. Referring to asking for anything, and in the above scriptures; give thanks for everything in His name. It does not mean: simply attach the words Jesus, Yeshua, Christ, God, Lord to whatever you are praying for either in praise (thanks) or petition. Its a sad thing that such ways of thinking turns God’s power into human dictation. Again the word name is and means character, spirit, what the person represents as who they are, not a word you call a person to specify who you are talking to or about (or in this case asking for something from). We don’t name our children traditionally this way, it has lost its favor. Biblical names all mean and represent their character, who they are. I will leave it to you to research this to completion. But, quickly added; to ask for anything and thank God for everything in Yeshua’s name in English translated the way it was meant to read is:
Ask for/give thanks for everything in submission and unity to all that Yeshua is, did, does and wants, in His character and the Spirit of His character. Hence if we ask for something that goes against His name/character, ya likely are asking for nothing, thanking Him for something He would not Himself give thanks for (an example: He would never thank His Father for the downfall, ruin, and eternal torment of ANYONE) He is thankful to His Father, for His grace towards all He has made, whether they deserve it or not. He asks His Father for the things that really matter, needs of the soul, a new car is likely not a soul need, more money (yes, it doesn’t matter how poor), things materialistically, not soul needs. As we begin to accept that, life begins to change dramatically for everyone. He’s not Santa Claus or the Wizard of Oz, His Kingdom barters on a totally different “currency”. So we can thank God in His name that He doesn’t give us all we ask for, and doesn’t receive all we often say “THANK GOD OR THANK JESUS for that!” Yes?

Thanksgiving is an amazing celebration, an opportunity to give and be thankful that sets the pace for the “good race”. Its a wonderful thing that God gives us yearly reminders what Life is really about! Giving all of ourselves to Him, thanking Yeshua (Jesus) for all He has done to make everything worth thanking Him for! To Him be the glory, now and forever!

Yes, indeed His cross changes everything!
Happy Thanksgiving to you all, may you be blessed in Yeshua’s name! 🙂

Grace and peace in Yeshua the Messiah ❤

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