Transformation through Praise

Praising God is not only what we were created to do, but it is also what helps transform our minds into spiritual thinking.  As a result, we are able to walk above negative circumstances.  It seems scary, and perhaps strange, to praise God in negative situations.   Yet, the results can be miraculous.

When you praise God while going through tough times, you are inviting heaven to move on your behalf.  Demonic influences can not tolerate praise to God.  While they might turn up the heat of battle for a time, they will not last long under praise to God.

Jehoshaphat and Judah

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Jehoshaphat ruled Judah, the southern portion of Israel, before the Babylonian captivity.  During his reign, many enemies came against him.  The number was vast according to 2 Chronicles 20:2.

While I am certain that Jehoshaphat had feelings of fear, he did not allow these emotions to rule him.  He gathered the people and fasted.  Jehoshaphat prayed sincerely acknowledging that he had no clue how to act.  He stated that his eyes were on God.

Praise Comes with Victory

The Lord assured Jehoshaphat that victory was his because the Lord was in control. After talking to the people, Jehoshaphat appointed singers to walk in the front lines of battle.  Putting singers on the front lines is not a normal strategic tactic. However, when God is fighting your battles, He does not use orthodox methods.

The singers marched into the battle along with the others singing praise to God.  When they began singing, the Lord Himself sent an ambush against the enemies of His people.  Most of these enemies were annihilated.  The ones who survived the ambush became confused and slaughtered each other.  The people of Judah looked out to see all of their enemies dead.  They gathered the plunder from their enemies.

Praise in My Personal Life

When my sister passed away in 2002, a gaping wound was left in my soul.  I did not think I could ever deal with the loss.  Depression and despair entered my mind and took over my life.  The Lord dealt with me to begin praising Him even though it was the last thing I felt like doing.  When I began singing praise to God on a regular basis, the heaviness began to lift.  After a while, it was totally gone.

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Image Via Pexels by Luis Quintero.

Last summer, my husband went before a judge in a final attempt to get social security disability that he had been denied several times before.  The battle was long and hard.  Due to insurance struggles, much needed doctor’s appointments were challenging to obtain.  Without needed medical evidence, it was impossible to get the help we needed.

The Lord reminded us to simply praise Him that the work had been done because He was in control.  By faith, and I mean not knowing the results, we began praising God.  After doing this for a period of time, we both began feeling a strong presence of the Holy Spirit.  God began moving.  My husband’s hearing before the judge went favorably giving us a good outcome.

Praise Brings Change

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I did not tell you these two stories to make my husband or myself look super spiritual. Believe me, we are very human, and we experienced and yielded to very human emotions at various times.  I am telling you that praising God causes your mind to think differently which is vital.  Praise changes your outlook on life and increases your faith.  Why?  When you praise, your focus is on God instead of all that is wrong. Praise magnifies God while giving in to despair magnifies the problem.

What about you?  Are you facing an intense battle?  Lift up your hands, and by faith, praise God for His mighty work in your situation.  Continue doing this even when your emotions are not in agreement.  Heaven will move on your behalf.

Prayer with Praise

I had the privilege of going with my dad last weekend to a church in which he ministers on a regular basis.  On the rare occasions that I do go with him, I always find the people very warm and welcoming.  The presence of the Lord is always experienced, and we usually find humor in some situation to enjoy.

As my dad preached, he began discussing the frequency in which God’s people often forget to praise God during prayer.  “You need to offer something sweet,” my father said referring to praise.  Instead of simply asking God to do this or do that, we need to praise Him for who He is and thank Him for the past prayers that He has answered.

Praise in Battle

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Image Via Pexels by Josh Sorenson.

Most of us are familiar with the story of King Jehoshaphat and the people of Judah in 2 Chronicles 20.  The people of Judah were facing some deadly enemies.  Immediately, the people sought the Lord, which is always the first step that should be taken in any crisis.  People began to hear from the Lord, and the consensus was that God would deliver them as He had before.

King Jehoshaphat appointed singers to go in the front line of the battle, singing, “Praise the Lord for His mercy endures forever.”  Their enemies became confused and began slaughtering each other rather than the people of Judah.  After all was said and done in the battle, the people of Judah took spoils from their enemies.

The Results of Our Praise

When you and I offer praises to God, even when it is the last thing we wish to do, we will find that our situations are not as big as they seem.  We will find that our spiritual enemies flee because they become confused.  We will find that we are taking spiritual spoils from our enemies

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Image via Pexels by Johannes Plenio.

According to Isaiah 43:19, the Lord does new things.  He makes a way where there seems to be none.  The entire chapter of Isaiah 43 is filled with reasons to praise God.  Throughout the chapter, God promises to bring His people victory over their enemies.  Most of all, He declares His love for us.  He vows that He has blotted out our sins and transgressions.  He is holy and cannot allow sin in His presence, yet, He redeems us from our sin through Jesus Christ and calls us righteous in his sight

 

What Will You Offer?

Although it is perfectly fine to offer your petitions and requests before God in prayer, it is vital to remember to offer something sweet.  Do not simply use prayer as a “give me, give me” session.  God is so much more than our personal genie.  Use your prayer time to give honor and praise to God.  Use scripture when you are not sure of what to say.  The Psalms and many passages in Isaiah offer many words of praise and worship.

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Image Via Pexels bu Luis Quintero.

Jesus gave us an example of how to pray in what we know as the Lord’s prayer.  The model prayer begins with praise then goes into various petitions then ends with an acknowledgement of who God is.  Certainly, we do not want to become legalistic in our prayers, but we do want to take time to offer praise to our God.  He is worthy!