How To Praise Him During The Good Times And The Bad Times

Troubles and Trials Are Momentary

Challenges and obstacles are normal in this life. During these difficult seasons, we have a choice. We can get negative and discouraged and talk about how things are not going to work out, or we can flip the script and go into praise and thanksgiving mode, which opens the door for God to move on our behalf.

“I’ll have a better attitude as soon as I get over this health issue.” Or “I’ll give God praise when I get through these tough times.” That’s not faith. As long as you’re negative, discouraged and focused on your problems, it limits what God can do in your life. Faith says, you’ve got to praise God in advance, and then the breakthrough will come. Flip the script, change your focus, and watch things change in your favour. Praise always precedes victory.

Today, flip the negative script, stop dwelling on the wrong things and focusing in the wrong direction, go into a season of praise and thanksgiving, which will confuse the enemy and the negative people in your life. Begin to declare that God is good. Declare that He is faithful. Declare His praises and open the door to victory! Hallelujah!

“Though the fig tree may not blossom, nor fruit be on the vines…yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation.” (Habakkuk 3:17-18, NKJV)

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The Power of Praise

4 Ways Praise Destroys Worry

The Broken Hallelujah

You’ve likely heard the song, “Hallelujah.” Most people love the dramatic, mesmerizing melody. Leonard Cohen released the song in 1984 and since then it has been performed by a “who’s who” of artists and featured in scores of movies, TV shows and music videos.

If you don’t know it (or even if you do) take a moment and listen to this amazing performance by Pentatonix:

The song always moves me to tears, but I could never figure out the lyrics, so I ignored them and just enjoyed the powerful melody. When I watched this Pentatonix rendition, I had to figure out what Cohen was saying in his choice of such cryptic language. I read through all the verses (fifteen in all, only about eight of which every get performed) and I read various stories and interpretations of their meaning. It reminded me of my generation trying to figure out what Don McLean’s ‘American Pie’ was all about, positing everything from the death of Buddy Holly to the second coming of Christ.

The brilliance of the lyrics of ‘Hallelujah’ is their openness and even invitation to a myriad of interpretations. Some see only an ode to sex, others a deeply religious struggle. Cohen said the song represented absolute surrender in a situation you cannot fix or dominate. Rabbi Ruth Gan Kagan affectionately called it a ‘hymn of the heretic’.

When I considered the meaning behind the lyrics, I found something that spoke to my soul. I believe there is a powerful message for us as we enter 2018. While it’s clearly not a Christian song, it is a profoundly honest song. I chose six of the verses that spoke to me the most. I admit to reading my own interpretation into them, but here is the message I found.

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Let Everything Praise Him

The Garment of Praise

to provide for those who mourn in Zion, to give to them a garland for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they may be called trees of righteousness, the planting of Yahweh, that he may be glorified. Isaiah 61:3 WEB

Have you ever felt so down, so lethargic, that you begin to ask yourself, ‘What is the point of it all?’ There are many things in this verse but the one that I want to mention today is the ‘spirit of heaviness’, better known by its bona fide name: ‘Depression.’

It can settle on anyone given the right circumstances and none of us are immune to it. We all like to think that we have it together, but really we are just one phone call away from crying at any given moment.

Once when we were overworked and nearly burned out, we went to an exhilarating praise and worship conference that lasted for three days. After the first night, I began to feel lighter, and brighter. Each hour that we spent there seemed to bring renewal, a refreshing of our spirit, like standing under a waterfall.

When I had arrived, I was pretty down and cynical, but afterwards, I was as light as a feather and cheerful. By the time I left the conference, I felt like I was walking on air and didn’t have a care in the world. I would not have cared if the world were ending. That time soaking in praise and worship brought immediate change in our life. We had exchanged the spirit of heaviness for the garment of praise.

Praise and depression are polar opposites and repel each other. If you are down, depressed, heavy, you will not feel like praising the Lord. If you are praising the Lord, then you will not feel like being depressed. If you are feeling ‘heavy’ today, find some good praise and worship music and soak in it for an hour. Listen to it while working. Begin to praise the Lord along with it, and that spirit of heaviness will flee out of hearing range.

Prayer: Heavenly Father I praise You today, please deliver me from the spirit of heaviness. Fill my life with Your presence, bring the right people, the right music, and the right opportunities into my life, in the name of Jesus Christ I pray.


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“I Stand Amazed (How Marvelous)” – Shane and Shane

It is good, but could be much better if they sang it with a temp that sounded like they were excited about it.