As we are still celebrating the birth of Jesus, we can shout from the rooftops “Praise the Lord!”. Today’s Psalm calls all people on earth, anywhere in the world, and those in heaven to get out, get moving, be thankful, be loud, and praise the Lord. It is a joyful Psalm, reminding all of us to offer up our thanksgiving and praise. I, for one, am not a stand-on-the-street-corner-shouting type of person, but this Psalm certainly makes me want to shout or state or exclaim aloud “Praise the Lord”.
By Webster’s definition, praise as a verb means
1 : to express a favorable judgment of : commend
2 : to glorify (a god or saint) especially by the attribution of perfections
Do we take the time to “glorify” God? Do we “express a favorable judgment”? If we look back on the last year, can we honestly say we have been full of praise every day? Most likely not. We have all been through good days and bad days, times of joy and times of sadness. As we close this year, we can reflect back and then look anew to what we can do differently.
If we look in the Bible (NIV version), the word praise is used 299 times in the Old Testament and 41 times in the New Testament. In today’s Psalm, the command to “Praise the Lord” is repeated nine times in the first five verses and twelve times in the entire psalm. Breaking down the Psalm, Everything and everyone in heaven should praise the Lord (148:1-6). This is interesting to me. Everyone in heaven? Those who have gone before should still be praising the Lord.
1 Praise the Lord.[a]
Praise the Lord from the heavens;
praise him in the heights above.
2 Praise him, all his angels;
praise him, all his heavenly hosts.
3 Praise him, sun and moon;
praise him, all you shining stars.
4 Praise him, you highest heavens
and you waters above the skies.
- Everything and everyone on earth should praise the Lord (148:7-14). This part is easier to grasp. Men, women, children, creatures all should Praise the Lord! From the mountains the seas, the hills, the trees, from anywhere and everywhere, Praise the Lord! We can and should praise the Lord. We can and should be thankful for all he has done for us this year. Maybe things didn’t go as you planned or expected, but it is still important to be thankful and praise him. When you see something that God has made, praise him for it! Praise him for keeping us close to him.
As I have read the posts this week, praise was highlighted quite a few times. Monday, Jillian started us off with Rejoice! Rejoice as God loves us, rejoice as he is watching over us. In return, we can offer our praise. A powerful word that helps us focus on God, not on ourselves. On Tuesday, we read about David praising God in Deb’s post. Then, Tracy’s picture and post on “Praise the Lord” helps us show gratefulness. Caitlyn also posted on praise: “praise is beautiful, praise is fitting” from Psalm 147. Praise IS beautiful and it IS fitting. As we enter 2018, each day we could find a new way to praise God each and everyday. He has done marvelous things. Rejoice!