Hi there. I am Jennifer Mallan pastor of Reliant Family Church in Tampa, Florida. Welcome to God Today. Well, we have been through a very interesting season in our lives. All of us. And whether you call it a global reset, a selah, a pause, a divine disruption, a divine interruption, a divine invitation, we have all had to use different coping mechanisms to get through, plow through this season.
One of the ways that I was able to do it, now many of you were able to do it, and that we will need to redo in times in the future when we go through difficulties, is through praise and through thanking God. Praise is thanking God on credit. It is thanking Him, acknowledging Him, and worshipping for something before it happens. Yes, we can thank Him after it happens, but it takes much more faith, and it takes much more trust to thank Him before it happens. To call those things that are not as though they were.
See, we were wired to praise. We were created to praise. We are beings that work to our best and optimal potential when we are praising. There is a story from Luke 17. And in that story, Jesus sees or goes into a place where there are 10 lepers. Now lepers, at the time, were unclean. They were not allowed to be around people. Talk about social distancing or physical distancing! They were rejected. They were looked down upon, they were ostracized. They were not happy people. They were not whole people. They were not healed. And yet, Jesus had mercy on them. He had pity on them and healed them. In the account, it says He told them to go show themselves to the priest. But, Jesus points out that only one of them came back and said “Thank you.” Only one came back and gave Him praise. Only one came back and then acknowledged the miracle that took place in their lives.
Aren’t those odds sad? That only 1 out of 10? I wonder if Jesus was trying to model to us, right there, the importance of praising. Praising in our storm, praising in our valley, praising in our mountain, praising in the good times, praising in the not so good times. Now, that account in Luke also says that the one that came back made them whole. He made them complete. He restored all things. He did a “tikkun olam” which is the restoration of all things in Hebrew.
Listen, when we get into a mindset of praise, I believe that all things will get restored and made whole, made perfect, and made complete. Now, in the book of Psalm 22:3, the word says, “God inhabits the praises of His people.” What does that mean? Inhabits comes from another Hebrew word which literally means to dwell, to abide, to homestead. Some of you homestead the place where you live. God wants, when we praise, it literally means that He comes down and He lives with us. He is with us. He is not a weekend visitation, He is not vacationing with us, it is not a holiday visit. It is a perpetual abiding and a dwelling.
And what is the prerequisite for that? Praising. Thanking Him. Worshipping. Finding the good. Rejoicing, giving Him the glory. Listen, just to do that, shifts us, and changes us. When we are magnifying the Lord, it minimizes our problem. It minimizes our situation. And so, I just invite you, whatever you are going through, whatever you’re facing, whatever you’re coming out of, however, you have reacted and responded to the events that have taken place in your life, remember that praise is critical. Praise is the key. Praise is a privilege and a duty. As we do that, we know the Father, we know the trinity is going to come and abide, inhabit, live, and dwell with us.
Can I pray with you? Father, I thank you. All of us need this reminder to get our eyes off our situation whether it is a leper situation, whether it is a dire situation. To get our eyes, and our minds, and our hearts, and our spirits on you. Lord, we know that God, spirit to spirit incredible things happen. God, today, I thank you that as an act of their will and by faith, they will begin to praise you, they will begin to thank you, they will begin to bless you, they will begin to be grateful, they will begin to expect to see your hand move in their situation. Jesus, we are so grateful for the price you paid. We are so grateful for all you’ve done. We are so grateful that it is finished. We are so grateful that the ending comes out where we win. Because of what you’ve done for us. And that is reason to praise, and that is worth a hallelujah to you today, tomorrow, and forever. Let’s praise Him family.