Encourage Yourself To Praise

“Praise the Lord! Praise the Lord, O my soul! I will praise the Lord as long as I live; I will sing praises to my God while I have my being.” ~ Psalms 146:1-2

Here the Psalmist is encouraging himself to praise the LORD. He probably doesn’t feel much like praising. Maybe things are rough at work. Maybe home-life is a mess. Maybe he is being unjustly persecuted. But still, he encourages himself to praise the LORD. He almost demands it, when he exclaims, “Praise the LORD, O my soul.”

“Don’t just sit there wallowing in your self-pity,” he seems to say to his soul. “Come on and praise the LORD, for there are benefits in praising. Things change when I praise. So come on soul, begin to praise.” Please realize that the soul is the mind, will, and emotion of a person. Therefore, the Psalmist is not caring about his own feelings, but rather, he instructs his mind to override his will, and praise the LORD. He doesn’t hold a council meeting to find out if it is a good idea. He doesn’t ask his soul to praise, he instructs his mind, his will, and his emotion to praise.

Now notice this. After encouraging his mind, will, and emotion to praise in verse 1, he disregards his feelings completely in verse 2 and makes an executive decision to overrule everything, not caring how down, or how depressed, or how weary from the fight his mind, will, and emotion are, he compels them to praise. “I will praise the LORD as I live; I will sing praises to my God while I have my being” (v 2). He is determined to praise his way out of the desert and sing his way out of the flames. He is determined to not let circumstances keep him down.

Also, did you take note that he makes the object of his praise personal? He says, “…my God…” Not the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, or the God of his father, David. No! It’s his God. He knows him personally, and he remembers the benefits intimately. So, whatever you’re going through today. Put them in check and sing praises to your God!

Heavenly Father, I ask You to envelop each and every one who reads and accepts this prayer today with Your love and compassion. Let Your loving arms hold them and let them feel the love You have for them. Make their rough paths smooth and their crooked paths straight. Give Your angels charge over them and answer when they call. In Jesus name, Amen.

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