By Helene Smith | PREVIEW Columnist
Why does God seek praise from His people? He is perfect. Does He need our praise? I confess, I thought it a bit self-serving. God, forgive me.
He doesn’t need our praise, He wants it. Why? Here is what I believe.
Praise is pleasing to God.
God created people for fellowship with Him. We are His children. Just as we crave close relationships with our offspring, He desires closeness with us.
What does fellowship have to do with praise? When we worship God we remind ourselves who He is and why we can trust Him. This draws us closer to Him. You are holy. You are righteous. You are merciful, mighty, powerful and glorious. You are love. Our relationship strengthens.
King David loved being in close relationship with his creator. He sought after it. David said in Psalm 34:1, “I will bless the Lord at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth.”
Praising God benefits us, too.
Proclaiming His attributes builds faith. Who is God that I would believe in Him? Why should I trust Him? Because He is merciful, loving, forgiving and my heavenly father.
Praise leads to thanksgiving. Great and mighty, loving Lord, thank you for forgiving me, saving me, and for my family and friends. I thank Him for smaller blessings like hot water in the shower, finding a lost item and for a sweet hug from my youngest granddaughter. I want praise and thanksgiving to be continually in my mouth.
“Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise — the fruit of lips that openly profess His name. And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased.” -— Hebrews 13:15-16.
Sometimes praise feels like a sacrifice. A worship song we sing in church might be one I don’t connect with or don’t know. Or maybe I’m not feeling great and everything seems an effort. It feels like a sacrifice right then. In a group of people who don’t know Him, I might not feel comfortable openly professing His name. Help me, Jesus, to offer praise in all circumstances.
When asked how to pray, Jesus taught his disciples the Lord’s Prayer. He began with acknowledging who God is — “Our Father. Hallowed be Thy name.” Holy, sacred, revered. That’s who He is.
He is the Master of the universe, not us. He hears our prayers. He knows what we need and what we want. I certainly remind Him often. That’s when I need to relinquish my “control” and start praising. God, you are all-knowing and wise, you are moving in my life, and in the lives of the people and situations I pray for. I trust you.
His time, not mine. His will, not mine. “Praise Him from whom all blessings flow.”
This column may include both fiction and nonfiction, and views expressed do not necessarily represent those of The SUN. Submissions can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.