“We had our fellowship group last night,” Stan began one morning.
“Good time?” I asked.
“It is always great,” Stan responded. “Super people!”
Continuing, he said, “There was something that occurred to me as we were finishing that I think is worth focusing on.”
“What do you have?” I asked.
“Well,” he said, “we always end our fellowship time with prayer. The leader usually asks for prayer requests and asks if anyone has a praise report.”
“What I am going to say,” Stan continued, “is for me to hear more than anyone else, but I think it is worth noting how praise is often viewed. Too often, I think, praise is limited to reporting on how God has answered a specific prayer.”
“Isn’t answered prayer worthy of praise?” I asked.
“Absolutely,” Stan responded, “but I am to be filled with praise to and for God all of the time, whether or not a specific prayer has been answered.”
“I am to focus on all of the magnificent things God has already done and is doing for me. Everything is worthy of praise, not just when what I want has been done.”
“I am to praise God. Period. I am not to examine my circumstances and, in essence, ask ‘what has God done for me lately,’ and then decide if it is worthy of praise.”
Enter His gates with thanksgiving, and His courts with praise. Give thanks to Him; bless His name. Psalm 100:4.
Prayer: Lord, you are worthy of praise at all times and for all things. You know how many times I have failed to praise you, focusing on what I want rather than on what you have already done and are doing. Please forgive me. And, Lord, please open me to see all of the reasons I have to praise you at all times, regardless of my personal circumstances. Please lead me in praising you because you are worthy of praise. Thank you that I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of Jesus. Amen.