Praise The LORD Everybody

1 Praise the Lord! Praise God in His sanctuary; praise Him in His mighty heavens! 2 Praise Him for His mighty deeds; praise Him according to His excellent greatness! 3Praise Him with trumpet sound; praise Him with lute and harp! 4Praise Him with tambourine and dance; praise Him with strings and pipe! 5 Praise Him with sounding cymbals; praise Him with loud clashing cymbals! 6Let everything that has breath praise the Lord! Praise the Lord! ~ Psalms 150:1-6

In his 1977 book, Prayer Is Invading the Impossible, Pastor Jack Hayford referred to praise as, and I quote: “an instrument of violence.” Yes, he actually called praise an instrument of violence. But then he goes on to explain his train of thought. He wrote:

Praise upsets the climate, which furthers the growth of so much of life’s suffering, confusion, turmoil, and strife. Praise destroys the atmosphere in which sickness, defeat, discouragement, and futility flourish. Praise beats out hell’s brush fires. Praise breathes heaven’s life into the vacuum death produces on Earth. The consequent tornado of holy power will cast down the obstacles that sin, self, sickness, and Satan have erected.

Pastor Jack Hayford

When we think of it that way, praise is indeed an instrument of violence. No wonder the Psalmist ended this praise psalm with “Let everything that has breath praise the LORD!”

When you are feeling defeated, praise.
When you are feeling discouraged, praise.
When you are feeling sick, praise.
When all hell breaks loose and comes against you, praise.

Praise is a weapon, or as Pastor Hayford put it, praise is an instrument of violence. We, as Christians, need to get violent in the spiritual and begin to tear down strongholds. We must stop being so passive, so dignified, and so quiet. Remember, only the violent take it by force. You want it, come and get it, but you must come prepared to be violent, so bring your instrument of violence, bring your praise. There is a Jamaican praise and worship song that goes something like this:

I com’ ya to take it by force, by force
I com’ ya to take it by force

We need to come prepared to it by force. That is what the Church needs: spiritual warriors who come prepared to do battle in the spiritual, who come prepared to make war on demonic forces, to cast out the spirit of infirmity, drive out the spirit of depression, and chase out the spirit of suicide. We need more of these warriors and even more so as we see the day approaching.

Dear Heavenly Father, we take the authority that Your Son Jesus gave His Church to trample on demons and to tread on serpents and scorpions. We take up the authority given to us over all the power of the enemy. And in that authority, I command the spirit of depression to leave in the Name of Jesus. Spirit of Suicide, I command you, in the name of Jesus, to leave now! I speak shalom peace over each person who reads this prayer and accepts this prayer right now. I speak health and life over the sick and command sickness to leave your body now, in the name of Jesus, for by His stripes, you are healed. In Jesus’ name, I pray, amen, and amen.

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Lay Down Your Clothes

They brought the colt to Jesus and threw their clothes on it, and he sat on it. Many people spread their clothes on the road, and others spread leafy branches cut from the fields. ~ Mark 11:7-8

When we think about Jesus’ Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem, we think about the Palm Branches and Jesus riding on a donkey. Oftentimes, we overlook that the Scriptures imply that the majority didn’t lay palm branches in front of Jesus, but instead, they laid down their clothes. By saying many did this and others did this, the author is implying that the many are the majority. The majority laid down their own clothes. They laid down all that they had before the LORD.

Early in Jesus’ ministry, He taught on faith. Specifically casting your anxiety onto God and having faith that He will clothe you and feed you (Matthew 6:25-34). They were putting this teaching into action, either knowingly or not. They threw their clothes before the LORD as they praised His name. They were building the Kingdom of God in faith, not caring about losing their earthly possessions.

Praise is one of the few things all with breath are to do (Psalms 150:6). This was their praise offering. They didn’t just declare Jesus the Messiah and praise His name; they praised Jesus with their actions. Their hearts were yearning for, seeking after, and following the Messiah. They praised Him with all that was in them because they understood who He was. This is the same kind of praise God desires from us. He desires us to praise Him with more than just our voices but with our actions.

Peace. Love. Go Forth and Give An Offering of Praise.

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Praise The LORD

1 Praise the LORD. Praise God in His sanctuary; praise Him in His mighty heavens. 2 Praise Him for His acts of power; praise Him for His surpassing greatness. 3 Praise Him with the sounding of the trumpet, praise Him with the harp and lyre, 4 praise Him with tambourine and dancing, praise Him with the strings and pipe, 5 praise Him with the clash of cymbals, praise Him with resounding cymbals. 6 Let everything that has breath praise the LORD. Praise the LORD. ~ Psalms 150:1-6

This is a hymn of praise to the LORD. The Psalmist is imploring everyone everywhere with everything to praise the LORD. In the little church that I grew up in as a young boy, we did not have musical instruments like electric guitars and drums; everything was done a cappella. But that is not God’s way; He wants us to praise Him with all of our instruments; Psalms 100 says to make a joyful noise unto the LORD…come before His presence with singing. Look also at the last verse of the Psalm we just read, Psalm 150:6, which says, Let everything that has breath praise the LORD.

I was on vacation one time and visited a church. They, too, did not have musical instruments, but they even took it a step further. No one in the congregation raised their hands in praise or worship. No one said, “Amen,” in agreement with what the pastor was preaching, or even utter a word of encouragement for him. But God didn’t even make a distinction between the Christian or the sinner; in fact, He was very specific; He said let EVERYTHING that has breath praise Him. If you have breath in your body, you ought to be praising God.

The thing to remember here is not to get confused with intercessory prayer and praise; they are different. Prayer – except for the prayer of repentance – is for the saints; praise is for everyone, so go on and praise Him today.

Heavenly Father, I lift up a shout of praise to You today for all the blessings I enjoy, all the prayers You have answered, and for all the times that You have been there for me when no one else understood. I praise You, LORD, for who You are and for what You have done for me. I praise You and give thanks for the great work of salvation that You so freely give to everyone who will accept it. LORD, may Your great and matchless Name be lifted up in my life and among the nations, and may Your praise never depart from my lips. May songs of rejoicing continually be in my mouth, and may You be exalted in all the world, for You are good, and Your mercies endure forever. Be glorified in my life. In Jesus’ name, I pray, Amen.

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Praise For The Answer

17 Then Daniel went home and told his friends Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah what had happened. 18 He urged them to ask the God of heaven to show them his mercy by telling them the secret, so they would not be executed along with the other wise men of Babylon. 19 That night the secret was revealed to Daniel in a vision. Then Daniel praised the God of heaven. ~ Daniel 2:17-19

Daniel was facing execution. His faith was being tested. But Daniel’s faith was strong in the LORD. He knew the God in whom he trusted and served. He knew that no matter what His God did, it was for His good.

When Daniel received the answer to his prayer, He didn’t immediately run to the king. He didn’t stop everything he was doing and go tell his friends the good news. No, Daniel praised the LORD. We ask and ask and ask, but how often do we stop and praise when we receive?

God is a good good father. He enjoys blessing His children. He enjoys giving them good gifts, but He desires a thank you in return. An offering of praise. That doesn’t cost us anything. It doesn’t cost us money, only a little bit of our time.

If we expect God to hear us and answer us, we need to be prepared to praise Him for His answer. He’s a good good God. His desire is for our good. There’s no one like Him. And He is more than worthy of our praise.

Peace. Love. Go Forth and Praise For The Answer.

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Serve The LORD With Gladness of Heart

1 Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth! 2 Serve the Lord with gladness! Come into his presence with singing! ~ Psalms 100:1-2

The LORD God wants us to be celebratory in worship. He does not want long sad faces but happy, joyful faces, and elated spirits. He wants us to clap our hands enthusiastically and sing with triumphant voices, for He is good, and His love endures forever.

The LORD gives us joy and peace because He has reconciled our souls to Him. God does not take pleasure in us losing or in our sorrows but in joy and in celebrations.

So, make an effort today to say that this is the day that the LORD has made and given to me. Therefore, I will rejoice and be glad in it. I will take pleasure in serving the LORD as He takes pleasure in me serving Him.

It is a joy for the LORD to bless us in everything we do. Therefore, we will bless the LORD with our mouth, with our hands, with our feet, and with all of our strength, and with everything that is within us. Will serve Him with gladness of heart.

Heavenly Father, thank you for giving us joy. Help me to forget about today’s hurts and tomorrow’s pain. Help me to focus on you as you deliver me from the hand of the enemy so that I can rejoice and be glad. Thank you, Father, in Jesus’ name I pray, amen.

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Pour Into The Next Generation

47 And all the royal officials have gone to King David and congratulated him, saying, ‘May your God make Solomon’s fame even greater than your own, and may Solomon’s reign be even greater than yours!’ Then the king bowed his head in worship as he lay in his bed, 48 and he said, ‘Praise the Lord, the God of Israel, who today has chosen a successor to sit on my throne while I am still alive to see it.’ ~ 1 Kings 1:47-48 NLT

We aren’t meant to stay in the same position forever. God raises us up and brings us into high places for a season. We aren’t immortal yet. One day every one of us will die, so God raises up another to replace us. Sometimes He raises them up before we have died so that we can pass the mantle on to them while we are still alive to so them succeed and guide them. And sometimes this is difficult to see take place.

It can be discouraging and make you feel like you’re no longer good enough or that you’re now used up. But that’s not the reason God does this. He wants you to raise up the next generation so that they might be prepared to take over when you’re gone. So that they have all of the lessons and words of wisdom that you passed down while you were in your place of authority over them. Don’t look at it as being replaced; look at it as being succeeded. Guide them, and you’ll live on through them.

One of my favorite shows ever made was Boy Meets World, and Eric, the oldest son in the show, said this to his dad:

You said to me that there would come a time when you weren’t around, and that’s not so… I remember everything you taught me, and I’m gonna turn around and teach that to my children. So you see, Dad, you’re always gonna be around.

See, when you pour out yourself and your knowledge and wisdom into someone else, you leave part of yourself with them even after you’re gone. King David understood that. He praised God that he was able to see his son succeed the throne. It’s a blessing to be able to influence and guide the next generation, so when you get the opportunity to raise up another and pass on your mantle, don’t be discouraged or disappointed. Most good things must come to an end but praise God that you got to see the beginning of the next good thing.

Peace. Love. Go Forth and Pour Into The Next Generation.

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Let Your Actions Give Glory To God

And the crowds that went before Him and that followed Him were shouting, “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!” 10 And when He entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred up, saying, “Who is this?” 11 And the crowds said, “This is the prophet Jesus, from Nazareth of Galilee.” ~ Matthew 21:9-11

By the time Jesus reached Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred up. Why? Because the crowds that followed and surrounded Jesus were boldly proclaiming,

Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!

The praising and rejoicing of the crowd caught the attention of the entire city and stirred something inside of them that they had to seek out who all of these people were worshipping and praising. Genuine praise and worship will always catch the attention of others. Why? Because the Spirit of the LORD rests on the praise of His people.

Even if you don’t know all of the Scriptures, or can’t speak eloquently, or aren’t walking in the gifts of the Spirit, you can be used by God to get the attention of others just by your genuine worship and praise because it won’t be the you that’s catching their eye, but the Spirit dwelling in you. If you are saved, you have become the Temple of God. The very Spirit of God dwells within you, and Jesus lives through you.

You don’t have to be a theologian, preacher, scholar, or anyone of great influence for people to notice something different in you. You just have to love your life, genuinely worshipping and praising God with everything you do. In your actions, the way you speak, the way you treat people, your emotions, your personality, and the vibe you give off are all acts of worship because we are to do everything to the glory of God.

Peace. Love. Go Forth and Let Your Actions Give Glory To God.

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Celebrate The Goodness of The LORD

11 Be glad in the Lord, and rejoice, O righteous, and shout for joy, all you upright in heart! ~ Psalms 32:11

Equilibrium is the state of balance or the adjustment of conflicting desires. In other words, when your inside does not match your outside, you have an imbalance in your equilibrium. Your body will then work to adjust the one with the other, and usually, the one with the strongest emotion, or the one you push the hardest, will be the dominant one.

For example. Suppose you are feeling good inside, but you pretend to be upset, and your face shows it; your words tell of it, and you act like you are upset. Soon your inside will begin to match your outside since it’s your dominant emotion, the one you are pushing the hardest, and you will begin to feel angry or upset, and you won’t even know why.

That is your equilibrium adjusting to balance the two; your inward and your outward. That is why God commanded them to be glad, or in other words, to begin celebrating with song and with clapping of hands. With shouts of elation and with whatever other outward expression of celebratory joy there maybe. Even before they begin to feel it inwardly.

Express it outwardly, and in due time, the inward will match the outward, and you will begin feeling the joy of the LORD, and the heart will rejoice and be thankful and grateful for all the LORD has done because His goodness is forever.

Peace. Love. Go Forth and Celebrate The Goodness of The LORD.

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Experience The Joy of The LORD

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness,  faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. ~ Galatians 5:22-23

God doesn’t say be happy because happiness is based on your circumstances, whereas joy is what God gives, in good times and in bad. The problem with happiness is it can be fleeting or even misleading. What I mean is this. Sometimes people smile on the outside and even laugh, while all the while, they are troubled on the inside. They have thoughts of suicide, worries, concerns, and day-to-day fears and doubts.

While joy gives us God’s peace, even in the midst of the storm, joy will take us through tribulation. Joy surrounds us even in the face of death. Joy changes our attitude even when gloom is hanging over us. Joy gives us hope.

If you want to experience the Joy of the LORD, you must begin with celebrating even when there is nothing to celebrate or nothing to celebrate about. If you celebrate God, a spirit of thankfulness will overshadow you, and joy will enter your heart.

Peace. Love. Go Forth and Experience The Joy of The LORD.

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Rejoice More

23 Be glad, O children of Zion, and rejoice in the Lord your God, for He has given the early rain for your vindication; He has poured down for you abundant rain, the early and the latter rain, as before. ~ Joel 2:23

Why did God tell the Children of Zion to rejoice? Because He has poured down abundant rain. He gave them the early and the latter rain, as before. They hadn’t seen as yet, but it was already done for them, and God wanted them to act like it so as to usher it into being. All of that is already done whether they have seen it or not. Seeing is not believing because the just shall live by faith.

What does rain represent in Scripture? Here, rain represents God’s blessings and favor and provision and the ability to provide a great harvest. Now, notice that there are three different kinds of rain. The abundant rain. The early rain. And the latter rain. And all three of these rains are different.

The abundant rain speaks of the blessings of the LORD, which leads to overflow and abundance. It’s the present blessings of the LORD. The autumn rains represent the past blessings that you should have had but you missed because you were either in the wrong place, had the wrong attitude, or were acting in the wrong behavior. It’s the missed blessings that God sent you that you should have had if it was not for disobedience. The latter rains are the future blessings that God has in store for you that will come in season and out of season. The more you rejoice and be glad, the more the blessings will flow.

Peace. Love. Go Forth and Rejoice More.

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