“He replied, “If they kept quiet, the stones along the road would burst into cheers!” ~Luke 19:40 (NLT)
“Remember that you cannot praise God enough!! No matter what you are going through, Praise! Praise! Praise!”
Those were just some of the words in the last e-mail I received from my best friend and sister in Christ, Leigh. The e-mail is dated 4/16/2013 and Leigh was called home to the Lord exactly two weeks later.
I have read the Gospel of Luke many times through the years and this particular verse about the stones bursting into cheers never gave me pause for thought. That, however, changed recently, while reading through some of my friend’s last e-mails.
What reason on earth would a stone have to praise God? Even if the stone wasn’t an inanimate object, why would something that just lies on the ground and gets trampled on have cause to praise God?
What reason would a young woman with a beautiful family have to praise God while lying in a hospital bed, in pain, dying of cancer?
The answer lies in the real reason we praise God. We praise, not based on our feelings, our situation, or who we are, but completely because of who He is. He is the One True God and is worthy of our praise despite our circumstances not because of them.
It goes against human nature to express approval or admiration to others when we are facing difficulty in life. Knowing that God is the One who can change our circumstances, yet at times doesn’t; makes it even more illogical to praise Him in the storm!
But, praising God has nothing to do with logic or emotion. In fact, it is not about us at all! It is not about what He has done (or undone) for you. It’s all about Him simply because He is Who He says He is!
Emotions are fleeting. Circumstances change. God, however, is the same, yesterday, today and forever. (Hebrews 13:8 NLT) Praising God is one of the reasons we were made, so regardless of how we feel or what is going on in our life, praise should be a continual practice. We should praise God to the point that it becomes second nature for us to praise Him… in ALL circumstances.
I remember sitting with Leigh at the hospital and I asked her if there was anything I could do for her. Without hesitation, she responded with a weak smile and said, “Nope. His grace is sufficient!” (2 Corinthians 12:9 NLT) Her eyes, her thoughts, her hopes were ALWAYS on Him.
Leigh was able to praise Him in the midst of a ferocious storm because she knew Him so intimately, that it never even crossed her mind NOT to praise Him.
Everything Leigh said and did was to point others to Christ. If you do not have a personal relationship with Jesus, don’t wait! (On the Fence) Ask Him into your heart and into your life… then praise, praise, praise Him! Because as a very wise woman told me… you cannot praise God enough!
(If you are interested in a personal relationship with Jesus but don’t know where to start click this link to find out! (How to Know Jesus- Joyce Meyer.org)