The Lord woke me with an urgency to read the one hundredth Psalm. I read it in different versions and liked both the way it read in The Message and NIV. Praises "will ever be on my lips" for our Heavenly Father when we live a life in His Presence. I was reading a book yesterday that shared how it is possible for God to be present in our everyday tasks just as much as He is present when we are in a church service. This is a hard thing for many to grasp. If you were raised with the thought that God could see and hear everything, why would you not believe you can live in His presence? As we live in His presence, we will have the desire to praise Him even during tough times. I can't imagine how wonderful it will be to praise Him face-to-face. Psalm 100 is a prophecy of when people will become believers. That is a time where people desire to praise God the most. I praise Him for His grace and love that pulled me back into His arms when I drifted away. I would not be where I am today had He not done so. I praise Him for the way He forgives us when we do wrong. I praise Him for His cleansing power that washes me so He can fill me to overflowing with more of Him. I praise Him for the way He gives peace in situations that it does not seem possible. I praise Him for providing in so many ways. I praise Him for answering my prayers. I could go on all day long with praises and I pray I will continue to speak praises throughout this day. People who live in this dark world need to hear our praises. Sometimes they get upset and feel like we are bragging about what God is doing in our lives and not in theirs. We need to brag about such things. Why? Because they need to see if they would surrender their life to God, it would be different. He would not take away the tough times because they are where are faith is stretched the farthest. But He will give peace in the midst of the storm. This morning I am using Psalm 100 as a prayer. I am praying for all to "shout for joy...worship the Lord with gladness...Know that the Lord is God...Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praises...give thanks to him and praise his name...his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations" (NIV). That last part is the icing on the cake! "his faithfulness continues through all generations" means my grand babies will know of His faithfulness. Woo hoo! That is another thing to praise Him for! I praise Him for the day that is ahead even though I have started with a cold. I praise Him for the way He will give us safety on our trip. I praise Him for the way He will be with my four-legged buddy while we are separated. I praise Him for friends who are going to love on him. I praise Him for a time of rest and relaxation that is ahead. I praise Him for the way he will give Doc wisdom and favor with a situation before him. I praise Him for the healing He is doing in my Momma and sister's body. I praise Him for the safe birth of a little guy yesterday. So, so many things to praise Him for. Woo hoo!
Thank You for accepting me back into Your arms when I strayed. Thank You for Your love, mercy, and grace. Thank You for the way You go before us. Father, I pray for those who do not know You to find You. I pray for those who need to have Your peace to realize it is available. Lord, bless our time of retreat with not only rest in our physical bodies but enrichment in our spiritual bodies. Thank You Jesus for being The One I Praise! Amen.