When is God worthy of praise? If he is who he says he is? Always. All of the time.
One of the many reasons I am still in love with my wife Mary is that she is an encourager. She is actively looking for the positive in people and in our life. With God you don’t have to search long to find something to praise. He is THE God. The almighty, the wise one, the one who knows, the one who loves, the one who forgives. It’s like looking at a diamond and trying to decide which facet is my favorite. It’s all good. It’s all beautiful. He is all good. He is all beautiful.
Life isn’t always a great place to be. Sometimes it’s hard. Sometimes it hurts. Sometimes it’s hard to keep going anticipating more of the same. But God is always good. He is always just. He is always loving. He is always compassionate. He is always all of the things he is. Like the sun is always shining, even on a cloudy day. Someday the sun will burn out but God will still be there being who he is and has been.
Psalm 86 is a plea for help but is dripping with praise for this God we worship. Why? Because he’s worth it.
“1 Hear me, Lord, and answer me,
for I am poor and needy.
2 Guard my life, for I am faithful to you;
save your servant who trusts in you.
You are my God; 3 have mercy on me, Lord,
for I call to you all day long.
4 Bring joy to your servant, Lord,
for I put my trust in you.
5 You, Lord, are forgiving and good,
abounding in love to all who call to you.
6 Hear my prayer, Lord;
listen to my cry for mercy.
7 When I am in distress, I call to you,
because you answer me.
8 Among the gods there is none like you, Lord;
no deeds can compare with yours.
9 All the nations you have made
will come and worship before you, Lord;
they will bring glory to your name.
10 For you are great and do marvelous deeds;
you alone are God.
11 Teach me your way, Lord,
that I may rely on your faithfulness;
give me an undivided heart,
that I may fear your name.
12 I will praise you, Lord my God, with all my heart;
I will glorify your name forever.
13 For great is your love toward me;
you have delivered me from the depths,
from the realm of the dead.
14 Arrogant foes are attacking me, O God;
ruthless people are trying to kill me—
they have no regard for you.
15 But you, Lord, are a compassionate and gracious God,
slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness.
16 Turn to me and have mercy on me;
show your strength in behalf of your servant;
save me, because I serve you
just as my mother did.
17 Give me a sign of your goodness,
that my enemies may see it and be put to shame,
for you, Lord, have helped me and comforted me.”
I hope for us all that no matter what situation we are in today that we can pause just a moment and look at God and tell Him what we see in Him. Be honest. He can take it. An honest prayer of frustration is better than a fake prayer of praise. I believe He is worthy of praise, but I also know there is pain and hurt that we don’t understand and it can filter our view of Him like the clouds block the sun and make everything look shadowy and sad. I know he loves us. I know he loves me. I know he loves you.
How do I know that? Jesus.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, (Jesus) that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
(Originally posted 10/27/16)