I woke up this morning excited to share these words with each of you. His Spirit had already determined what He wanted me to focus on for this week’s blog series, and as I pulled up the Bible App verse of the day, I smiled as I read these words:
The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty One who will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness; He will quiet you by His love; He will exult over you with loud singing.- Zephaniah 3:17
It seems that our souls are quieted most when His voice becomes louder than all the other things surrounding us.
Many of you have expressed how much you connected to the words in Chapter 22, the chapter entitled, Grace. On page 119, I state these words,
“If we are unaware of His provisions, it is not because He is not giving, it is because we are too worried about getting what we think we need and not trusting His gifts.”
Too worried about getting what we think we need.
Not trusting His gifts.
Even in this season, over a year later, I find myself still learning and re-learning these truths.
He must become greater, I must become less (John 3:30).
I know this is the key to experiencing true life and peace, yet the process burns at times and feels much more unnatural than I would wish.
How do we focus on His gentle yet loud singing over us whenever we are so blatantly aware of the world’s screaming?
“The Lord is faithful in all His words and kind in all His works. The Lord upholds all who are falling and raises up all who are bowed down. The eyes of all look to you, and you give them their food in due season. You open your hand; you satisfy the desire of every living thing. The Lord is righteous in all His ways and kind in all his works.”- Psalm 145:13-17
Maybe it’s time we stop thinking, “What’s in it for me?” and, instead, start proclaiming, “I’m in it for Him”.
When our praises are ever before Him, when we are fixing our eyes not on the seen but on the unseen, when we make a choice to see eternity in the midst of the fleeting, that’s when His singing is most clear.
We must make a choice- daily- to push the noises of the world into the background in light of a holy and true God.
Not because we always understand what He is doing.
Not because our days are perfect, our life is always comfortable, and things consistently go our way.
Because of Christ and Christ alone.
Because, in Christ, we have the choice to let Him live out all our days- the choice to focus on the eternal beautiful around rather than the seemingly negative- which, by the way, is all temporary. He is making all things new (Revelation 21:5).
How perfect that our God wanted to seer this on our hearts on a Monday.
On a day in which the world might tell us rejoicing is hard; might we fixate on the God who says rejoice in all things.
The truth is, praising His holy name isn’t just fitting on Sunday, or Wednesday, or at church, or bible study, or when you feel like it.
Praising Him should be the overflow of our hearts at all times, simply because He is God and He is worthy.
The Personal Growth Challenge this week is this: In the morning before you even get out of bed, begin praising Him for who He is- not the gifts, but the Giver Himself. Praise Him for His power, His might, His sovereignty, etc. Make your own list and make it personal, but start each day out with praises of His name.
The Communal Growth Challenge will involve you making a point to steer the conversations of your life around His sovereignty and His goodness. For some, this might be easy, as your work or home environment alludes to these interactions already. For others, this will be a stretch. Remember, He who is in you, if you are in Christ, is greater than He who is in the world. With Him, this is possible.
The Pay-It-Forward Challenge is to write down the list of those qualities of God that you are praising Him for one morning, and then, anonymously pass it on to someone you think might need the encouragement.
Friends, God is who He says He is.
He is worthy of all praise.
In all things.
At all times.
No matter what.
May we trust heavily on His provision and His ways no matter what the cost.