January 17th, 2023 - God Inhabits His Praises

God Inhabits His Praises

God’s presence is truly a gift for all believers. As we spend time with scripture today, let’s invite the Lord to meet us. Find a quiet place where you can focus on God’s word without distractions. Take a deep breath and calm your mind.

Father, thank you for your word and the enlightenment it brings when we study it. Help us hear your voice and feel your Spirit so that we may better understand your will and join in the mission you have for us.

Let’s begin by reading Psalm 145.
“I will extol you, my God and King, and bless your name forever and ever. 2 Every day I will bless you and praise your name forever and ever. 3 Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised, and his greatness is unsearchable. 4 One generation shall commend your works to another, and shall declare your mighty acts. 5 On the glorious splendor of your majesty, and on your wondrous works, I will meditate.

6 They sh
all speak of the might of your awesome deeds, and I will declare your greatness. 7 They shall pour forth the fame of your abundant goodness and shall sing aloud of your righteousness. 8 The Lord is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love. 9 The Lord is good to all, and his mercy is over all that he has made. 10 All your works shall give thanks to you, O Lord, and all your saints shall bless you! 11 They shall speak of the glory of your kingdom and tell of your power, 12 to make known to the children of man your mighty deeds, and the glorious splendor of your kingdom. 13 Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and your dominion endures throughout all generations. [The Lord is faithful in all his words and kind in all his works.]  14 The Lord upholds all who are falling and raises up all who are bowed down. 15 The eyes of all look to you, and you give them their food in due season. 16 You open your hand; you satisfy the desire of every living thing. 17 The Lord is righteous in all his ways and kind in all his works. 18 The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth. 19 He fulfills the desire of those who fear him; he also hears their cry and saves them. 20 The Lord preserves all who love him, but all the wicked he will destroy. 21 My mouth will speak the praise of the Lord, and let all flesh bless his holy name forever and ever.”

This Psalm expresses deep adoration for God’s character and sovereignty. In it, we see examples of the goodness of God applied towards believers both corporately and on an individual level. One remarkable feature from this passage is the number of words the author uses to describe the act of “praising”.  Words like “extol, bless, praise, commend, declare, meditate, speak, pour forth, sing aloud, and give thanks” are all employed in an attempt to highlight what our response should be to the unique facets of who God is and what He has done.

This passage shows that believers can come to have a better understanding of God through consistent time spent meditating on His works (Psalm 145:2-5). In verse 18, we find a subtle invitation to experience the presence of God - “The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth.” If we are willing to call on God, to seek Him, to pursue Him in a manner that recognizes his holiness, He will draw near and make himself known to us.

If you desire to experience the presence of God, you must consider how you pursue Him. Are prayer and meditation on God’s wondrous works part of your daily routine? Is the faithful reading of Scriptures a habit? Do your conversations often lead to some recognition of God’s work in your life? Are discussions of God’s splendor so frequent in your home that your children are learning of His greatness? Is singing aloud about the righteousness of God a regular rhythm to your day?

What practice can you begin this week that will lead to a growing adoration of God and experiencing His presence?

After you have spent a few moments reflecting on ways the Lord may be inviting you into a deeper relationship, decide what practical steps can make it happen. Is there a beneficial practice you need to begin? Perhaps there is something that needs to be pruned out of your life because it is hindering your growth as a Christian.

Pray: God, words can barely scratch the surface of how wonderful You are. Thank You for giving me the hope of a relationship with you through the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Help me live a life that is not void of your presence.  I do not want to simply know facts about you; I want to adore You, having experienced your greatness firsthand, time and time again. May the words of my mouth, and the meditations of my heart be acceptable in Your sight, Lord. Tune my heart to sing Your praises every day, in every circumstance.