Reading: Psalm 104:35b – “Praise the Lord, O my soul. Praise the Lord.”
Today’s reading is short and sweet. It centers on just one thing. So what does it mean or look like to praise the Lord?
The simplest and perhaps most obvious answer is worship. We gather together on a Sunday morning or a Saturday night or whenever to praise and worship the Lord. This formal setting often includes reading and proclaiming the scriptures, songs and/or hymns, prayer, and fellowship. There may be other elements too. These corporate gatherings are a way that we praise the Lord as the community of faith.
Some of these public worship practices are also a part of our personal faith life. In our daily quiet time we often read and meditate on scripture, we pray, and maybe we journal or write about our reflections on the word. In their quiet time some may thank God for their blessings, offer confessions… Each of these are also a means to praise the Lord.
Every time we listen to the Holy Spirit and follow the guidance or respond to the conviction with confession and repentance, we are praising the Lord. Being obedient and faithful to the voice or the nudge is another way that we bring praise to the Lord – by living a life of faith. The Holy Spirit often leads us to action: loving a neighbor, helping one in need, bringing consolation to the grieving… Not only is being the hands and feet of Jesus an act of praise – it invites the other to praise the Lord for what has been done on their behalf.
As we seek to live a life that praises the Lord, in what other ways do you praise the Lord?
Prayer: Lord God, you are ever present in my life. So I ask that you would use me today ever as a means of praise – whether it is me praising you in word or action or if it is these things drawing another to praise you. Amen.