Recently, I have started to understand praise better! Part of my understanding has just come naturally through spiritual growth. Part of it has come from reading Psalms (although it took over 100 chapters to make me understand!). The problem is that I, and I’m sure many other people, look at praise as a complex thing!
We serve a God of simplicity. Sure there are some things about God we don’t fully understand (His infinite nature, the Trinity, etc) but, overall, He has made things pretty simple for us! He made salvation as simple as having Faith and calling out to Him (Romans 10:13), He made His commands as simple as loving Him and others (Mathew 22:36-40), and He made contacting Him as simple as speaking to His Son (1 Timothy 2:5). So, why should praising Him be complex?
The truth is it isn’t. Praising God is as easy as praising a person or pet. Yes, that is right, as easy as praising a person or pet! Think about it, you praise your dog when you teach him a new trick. You tell him how good a dog he is and how smart he is. You praise an artist for a good painting. You praise an actor for a stunning performance. You praise your spouse for just looking good (or at least you should)! God does not expect anything else!
Praising God is simply the act of complimenting Him and His works! We can praise God by telling Him how powerful He is and how amazing His creation is! We can praise Him by thanking Him for loving us and being merciful to us! By telling Him how just and righteous He is we are praising Him!
That is such a freeing thought! We are instructed to praise God (there are probably hundreds of Bible verses on this but here are two: Psalm 106:1 and Psalm 150:3) and He made it something easy and simple to do and understand! We can praise Him through prayer, writing, poems, singing, or anything!
Now here is something mind boggling to understand: God wants our praise! Think about this. Do you desire the praise of someone you don’t care about? Not really, right? God desired our praise so much that He not only created us and gave us life, He created the gorgeous world we live in! Like we didn’t have reason to praise Him enough for creating us, He gave us a beautiful world to draw inspiration from! If God desires our praise that much, He must think pretty highly of us!
This brings us full circle, though. We now have another reason to praise Him! He loves us immensely! How can we not praise a perfect, righteous, just, all-powerful God who loves weak, sinful creatures like us! In fact, He loves us so much that He wants us to enjoy praising Him! We are called to joyfully praise Him (again lots of references but here is one example Psalm 98:4)
God loves us. He loves and wants our joyful praise! How amazing is this?! So, what is your favorite way to praise God? Sound off in the comments below!