August 10, 2012
Turning Complaining Into Praise
"It is good to praise the Lord ... For you make me glad by your deeds, O Lord; I sing for joy at the works of your hands." - Psalm 92:1-4 (NIV 1984)
A few months ago I noticed the climate in my home had changed. It seemed nothing was good enough, attitudes were negative and a lot was being taken for granted. Appreciation had turned to complaint and contentment to displeasure. My family was snippy and short in our treatment of one another.
One day I had had enough and declared, "This has got to stop!"
The Lord whispered the word praise to my heart and showed me we had become praise-less. On the way home from my kids' school I issued the following decree: "From today forward we are going to be a grateful family, thanking God for everything He does. Whether the blessing is big or small, direct or indirect, we are going to praise Him."
I purchased a small notebook and placed it and a pen on our TV stand. Later that day, I peeked inside and was delighted to read my daughter had recorded the first praise. "I made brownies today. Dance Central and Kinect gives me a way to exercise inside." The days followed with more praises recorded from our whole family.
• Mrs. Macedo, my English teacher
• Selling 31 boxes of Girl Scout cookies
• Daddy's job
• Family devotions this morning
• 85 boxes of Girl Scout cookies sold
• Erin is spending the night
• My ticket was thrown out of court (This was my personal favorite)
The more we gave thanks, the more our attitudes changed.
In today's key verse, the psalmist teaches us that praising God is good. There is something mysteriously powerful about giving glory to the Lord. The joy created by my family's praise transformed the once unpleasant climate to one that is now warm and accepting, appreciative and complimentary.
Is our home always full of compliments and kindness? No, we are human and can easily fall back into complaining. But our family's praise book has made us more aware of God's goodness and we give praise more readily. We've experienced how good it really is to praise God.
Every day gives us opportunities to worship God, whether they seem minute or mighty. Through praise, our burdens don't seem so heavy and our life becomes a sweet fragrance to those around us.
Try it. Try praising God for the parking space close to the door or the one far away because you have the opportunity to enjoy being outdoors. Praise Him for the kindness of the bank teller. Praise Him for the opportunity to wake up and hear creation's symphony of praise, even if it is 5:00 am on a Saturday and the dog woke you up.
Give praise today. It's good for you and will transform you and others.
Dear Lord, I want to sing a song of praise everyday in response to Your goodness. Prick my heart to praise You in the minute and the mighty. You are worthy! In Jesus' Name, Amen.
Would you like to bring the message of this devotion to the women of your church? Click here to find out more about considering Wendy Pope as your next retreat / key note speaker.
Visit Wendy's blog for a glimpse at her family's "Praise Book."
31 Days of Praise by Ruth and Warren Myers
Living Free in Christ CD teaching by Wendy Pope
Reflect and Respond:
What can you praise God for today? Read all of Psalm 150 aloud and praise God each time He pricks your heart to do so.
Purchase an inexpensive notebook. Declare a decree of praise and record all of God's goodness to you.
Psalm 96:2, "Sing to the LORD, praise his name; proclaim his salvation day after day." (NIV)
Psalm 96:4a, "For great is the LORD and most worthy of praise." (NIV)
Psalm 150:6, "Let everything that has breath praise the LORD. Praise the LORD." (NIV)
© 2012 by Wendy Pope. All rights reserved.
Proverbs 31 Ministries
616-G Matthews-Mint Hill Road
Matthews, NC 28105
Originally published Friday, 10 August 2012.