Monday, February 12, 2018

Praise . . . Regardless - Martin Wiles

For this, O Lord, I will praise you among the nations; I will sing praises to your name. Psalm 18:49 NLT
Her instructions to the piano instructor were clear: teach regular piano lessons for fifteen minutes and teach hymns for the remainder of the time.
Mom was a member of a small United Methodist Church nestled on a country road. The only person who could play the piano could really not play well at all. So my grandmother decided to do something about it. She took the money she made from selling fish she caught and paid for Mom to take piano lessons so she could play at church as soon as possible. Her plan worked, and at nine years of age Mom began playing the piano in church.
That was sixty-seven years ago, and Mom still plays. Yet things didn’t work out exactly the way she planned. She had dreams of becoming a concert pianist—and probably could have been. But Dad came along, stole her heart, and married her just before being shipped overseas by the Army.
Shortly after his enlistment was over, Dad accepted the call into full-time Christian ministry. And Mom? She became the pianist and/or music leader for every church he pastored until he retired. She never made the stage she hoped for, but she praised God with her hands and mouth for all of those years—and still does when she has the opportunity.
The psalmist King David did too. In his early years, he praised God with a harp. He even danced before the Lord on one occasion. He praised God often by writing psalms, as well with his mouth. God had delivered him from many enemies during his lifetime, and he didn’t mind letting others know about it.
The apostle Paul said he had learned to be content in all circumstances. Thus, he could praise God in all situations. It’s a hard lesson to learn, but one God wants us to master. We can praise God for salvation. He forgives all of our sins. We can praise Him for the hope of eternal life. There, all the things we don’t like here will be missing. We can praise Him for His promise to work all things together for our good. All things won’t be good, but He’ll sustain us and work them for our good.
The list of things to praise God for is endless. Pick a few each day, and praise Him . . . regardless.

Prayer: Father, we praise You for who You are and for who we can be through Christ. 

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