God Lives in the Center of Praise
I like to praise God using the words of some of the great old hymns. One line in "Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee" speaks of God as being in "the center of unbroken praise." Despite what is going on around us, we can be a part of that circle of praise surrounding God! What a joyful privilege!
The Old Testament prophet Habakkuk discovered this privilege when wickedness was out of control in Judah. Habakkuk determined to ask God why He was doing nothing and to stay before Him until God answered: "I will climb up into my watchtower now and wait to see what the LORD will say to me and how he will answer my complaint" (2:1).
The Lord let him know that it would get worse, but in the end, God would bring deliverance. Habakkuk learned to recognize God as the absolute Ruler controlling all things. He would wait on God's perfect timing in a spirit of worship.
Habakkuk understood that God is both good and sovereign. He listed the worst calamities imaginable and said, "I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God" (Hab. 3:18).
Habakkuk had reached the ultimate in spiritual growth; he would praise God no matter what happened because he recognized he walked with an all-powerful, loving God. He would be a part of the those surrounding God with praise.
When we trust God to control every detail of our lives, we, too, can praise God in all things. It's a matter of faith.
Dear Lord, help me to recognize that failing to praise You in everything is failing to recognize Your desire and power to make all things work together for good. Help me to surround you with praise.
"Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ" (Ephesians 5:19-20).