We live in a negative world, a fallen world where it seems that the ungodly are getting more and more prominent. So much of what we hear is just negative, and we have to make a deliberate effort to be positive and counter the culture we live in.
Praise is a great tool to help us achieve that.
If someone were to pass out, the first thing we’d do is check their pulse to see if their heart is still beating. In the same sense, checking our praise lives is how we check our spiritual pulse. If we don’t live lives that are constantly giving thanksgiving and praise unto God, we are not spiritually healthy.
Some people may take offense at that, thinking I just don’t know their situations. But Paul said in Philippians 4:4—
Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice.
Paul didn’t just say it once; he said it twice. He didn’t want anyone thinking he had made a mistake or that there were exceptions to what he said. We are always supposed to be rejoicing in the Lord. It’s a command, not a suggestion to do it if we feel like it.
Paul lived what he preached. When he was beaten and thrown in the deepest darkest part of the dungeon, he and Silas broke out in praise at midnight (Acts 16:22-26). They didn’t just do this as spiritual warfare. They weren’t praising God through gritted teeth, just to get out of their problem. When they were set free, they didn’t leave. They were actually praising God because they loved Him and were worshiping out of a pure heart. It so affected the other prisoners that none of them left either. Praise caused a revival.
We may not feel joyful, but Scripture tells us in Galatians 5:22 that the fruit of the Spirit is joy. If we have the Holy Spirit, we have joy. We may not feel that joy, but we can choose to lift our hands and speak forth praise to God by faith.
Learning to praise God even when everything is going badly will change our hearts, make us much more effective, and cause our faith to abound.
I truly believe that my choice to praise God, even after getting the report that my son was dead, was one of the biggest factors in seeing him raised from the dead after nearly five hours. I didn’t know what the outcome would be, but I started praising God with all of my heart and telling Him—and the devil—that regardless, I would not quit serving Him. It was at that moment that faith abounded in my heart, and I knew he would be raised from the dead. Thank You, Jesus!
-Andrew Wommack Ministries