They say there are three things of utmost importance to human beings: health, love and money. And that the lack of one of those things is enough to throw your life into a storm.
They also say that most marriages face only one major crisis, but if it comes early in your marriage, you may have another.
While these sayings may or may not be true, I can tell you that I’ve had my share of trials, storms and crises in the last twenty years of my adult life; at least one in each of those three areas. As I’ve learned to praise the Lord for his goodness, both in and out of the storms, I’ve begun to see a pattern.
Praise brought healing, where there would have been anger and bitterness.
Healing allowed me to share my story with others, giving them hope for God’s healing in their lives as well.
Praise, Healing, and Hope. Those are all God things, and they are all designed to bring him glory.
I don’t know what your storm or your story is, Friend. Perhaps, like my husband and I, you’ve weathered such storms as pornography, depression, deputation, miscarriage, un-realized adoption, stressful work, separations, cross-country or international moves, public slander, humiliation, abandonment, rejection, betrayal, criticisms, loneliness, accidents, illness, or poverty.
You know what I’ve learned through these God-ordained storms in my life?
- God is faithful.
- He is good.
- He is merciful.
- He is sovereign.
- He is not surprised, but rather calmly in control.
- He does care for me, even down to the $10 detail.
- He will provide for what he calls me to do.
- He does love me – immensely.
- He delights in me.
- His approval is the ultimate blessing, and the only necessary one.
- He is trustworthy.
- He can heal.
- He can give hope.
- He can give joy.
- He has a plan, one that leads to my good and his glory.
- He protects.
- He guides.
- He gives good gifts.
- He loves me in spite of myself, my sin, my complaints, and my doubts.
- His consequences in love are always less than I deserve.
- He consistently blesses me above what I deserve.
- He can turn solemn, weeping hearts into hearts of praise.
And he may allow a storm, in part, because someone else is watching who needs to know he can be trusted both in and out of it.
The interesting thing about praise is that it benefits not only the one voicing the praise, but also the listener. Praise is as much for you as it is for others.
God is working in you to heal your heart and teach you to praise, so that your song in the storm may be a light to those he’s placed around you.
I waited patiently for the Lord: he inclined to mea nd heard my cry.
He drew me up from the pit of destruction,
out of the miry bog, and set my feet upon a rock, making my steps secure.
He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God.
Many will see and fear, and put their trust in the Lord.
Psalm 40:1-2 (ESV)
Will you choose praise?
*This post is an excerpt from In Spite of Myself: How Intentional Praise Can Transform Your Heart and Home by Katie Hornor, used by permission.
Katie Hornor writes at ParadisePraises.com. Her new book In Spite of Myself: How Intentional Praise Can Transform Your Heart and Home just released and stems from the lessons she’s learned in choosing to praise, intentionally, as a wife, expat, homeschool parent and business owner. Click here or follow the #IChoosePraise hashtag on social media for information on the book, and to learn how to join Katie for a free 4-week Bible study on Praise.