Tuesday, October 28, 2014

how praise brings freedom



Last week we talked about memorizing God’s word in our journey to freedom from control. I had every intention off continuing this series sooner, but honestly, I’ve been stuck in the middle of the battle for control with a whole new angle. And the Nester reminds us all that the world doesn’t need our obligation. We don’t put out lovely and inspirational thoughts just for the sake of lovely and inspirational thoughts. We do it because our heart is behind what we’re saying. This last week my heart was busy doing other things. 

I’ve been battling with my thoughts. There’s been some parenting issues that have caused my mommy heart to race and then my worrying mind to wander. It’s hard not to as parents. We see what’s going on in the world around us, or in our kids’ lives, and we worry. 

I’ve realized that lately I’ve been allowing worry to consume my thoughts. Worry causes me to try even harder to be in control, it tempts me to hold on too tight. Worry and trust don’t dwell together; when my mind is worrying then my heart is not trusting. 

I wonder how different the trajectory of my thoughts would be if I choose to praise God instead of focusing on the things that worry me. I wonder at how much more at peace I’d be.

That is the reason we praise when we are fighting our battles. Because worry at it’s worst exposes my incessant need to control things. It causes me to focus on my own solutions and places too much pressure on myself to make things right with my kids, especially in the particular situation we are walking through. 

When I worry I try to control things. But when I choose to praise God in the middle of what I can’t understand then I begin to walk in victory. My praise reminds me of who is control, who is all sufficient to take care of my needs and meet me when I am at weakest. Praise shifts my perspective. 

Before we can understand the value of praise in our fights, we need to have a right understanding of the nature of praise. Praise is giving God the worth he is due. It is normally done through song, but it can be spoken or written as well. The Dictionary of Biblical Imagery defines praise as “a response to the worthiness of someone or something. The psalms of praise celebrate and revere the worthiness of God.” 

Praise is simply declaring how amazing God is and how worthy he is of all honor and power and glory. Praise pulls our attention to who God is and what he has done on our behalf. It is a literal lifting of our eyes away from our situation up to God. 

It is fitting that praise is such a mighty weapon for fighting our battles. The words of praise, coming from our mouths into space and open air, shift things in the spiritual realm. There is a reason that the demons reacted so strongly to Jesus while he was here on earth, they felt things when he was around. The Psalms tell us that God inhabits the praises of his people (Psalm 22:3) Where people are praising, God is dwelling. Our praise literally makes a home for God. Is it any wonder that praise gets the job done when it comes winning our spiritual battles?




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This is part of a month long series on Quitting the Legacy of Control, and putting an end to our control freak ways. Catch up on the rest of the posts hereor by clicking the button below.


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