Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise – the fruit of lips that openly profess His name.
Hebrews 13: 15
It’s not easy to praise the Lord when life is hard. I always considered this verse to mean praising the Lord in song at church but lately I’ve been seeing a deeper meaning. It’s not easy to praise the Lord and to give Him thanks when life hurls disappointments, loss, injury or illness. I’ve been walking through some of those lately and I’m seeing that God wants us to praise Him even in the midst of those hard times.
As I’m typing this post I see some humor in using the term “walking” through hard times because I’ve actually been limping around for the past 3 1/2 weeks. For no good reason, one of our lawn chairs attacked me and we wrestled violently until I hit the ground. I tore up the skin over my knee and had other sprains and some lovely bruises. I will spare you the gory details, although the nurse in me loves to chat about such things. I will say that daily activities and preparing for Christmas have been a challenge thanks to a knee that barely bends. And I will confess that I’ve been grumpy about the whole situation, with having to ask for help (I’m very independent) and also with having to miss church and Christmas celebrations with family and friends. All the while, I should have been thanking the Lord for His protection from broken bones, and head or back injuries. But to my shame, I’ve often given in to frustration, sadness, discontent and grumpiness. So, I pray, quote Scripture and try to do better but it has been more of a challenge than I’ve experienced in a long time.
Thankfully, and much to my husband’s relief I’m sure, I’ve had a very real attitude adjustment with God’s help. God placed the phrase “sacrifice of praise” on my mind often throughout this discouraging time. I have been learning that although praising God is often easy for me, sometimes, especially when life is hard, it truly is a sacrifice. In this situation, I sacrifice my self-centeredness and my discontent and I focus on Him and His goodness, blessings and all He has done. It is so easy to give in to discontent and dissatisfaction, but those things are not of God. They are part of our old nature. As Christians, God gives us a new nature, a new life that is to bring glory to Him and Him alone. When I give the sacrifice of praise, I am a witness of God’s goodness, grace, peace and love. My situation may not change, but personally my heart becomes more content. I can rest assured that God is in control no matter what I face. And I truly believe that contentment, that “peace that passes understanding (see Philippians 4: 7)” can point others to Him. And that’s what we as Christians must remember … it’s all about Him and living a life that points others to Him.
To ease your mind, I will assure you that the lawn chair was not injured from the wrestling match and proudly continues to reside under the back porch in view of the bird feeders hoping I will return again. That has yet to occur as stairs are not friendly to me these days either. Bama Kitty and Abby Pup were witness to the wrestling match and stayed close by until my husband came to my rescue. Bama remained calm and collected as a kitty cat should. On the other hand, Abby was so upset and intent on telling my hubby about my fall that he could not help me until we reassured her that I would be alright. She’s a very smart Pup! 🐶😻🥰
And yes, I am being a little silly but a little silliness about such things in life helps too 🙂. And truly, because laughter is typically easy for me, I had a hard time laughing until I got my attitude adjustment! What a blessing to be able to laugh easily again! So let me say Praise the Lord for His many blessings! 🙌🙌🙌😃😃😃
Thank you for reading and following along with Hope and a Dash of Humor! May God bless you and keep you safe this Holiday Season!