Friday, March 27, 2009 Print Article
Leave a Comment Start With Praise
Bishop Vashti McKenzie "So he pretended to be insane in their presence..." - I Samuel 21: 13
"I call to the Lord, who is worthy of praise; and I am saved from my enemies." - 2 Samuel 22:4
Every day is a blessed day! Everyday that you can have your prayers heard in heaven; every day that we walk not as children of the darkness but as children of light; every day is blessed when we grow in faith and grace; blessed days that we saturate every moment in the love of God; every day that our flesh surrenders to the Holy Spirit and we die to sin and come alive to Christ. Every day is a blessed day.
There are some blessed days that we feel more like muddy waters rather than flowing streams. There are some days we feel like sandpaper than silk; sludge than an espresso or a "hooptie" than a Bentley! The events of the day threatened to overshadow the blessedness of the day.
Ask David about the blessed day he acted a fool.
David, in I Samuel 21: 10-15 was running for his life because of the rage and jealousy of Saul. David was a shooting star. He climbs the ladder of success seemingly overnight. One day he was commanding sheep in the hills and the next he is Saul's son-in-law, captain of his body guard and commanding his army.
He was a man who could do no wrong. He killed a giant and left to conquer the enemies of the king. David was doing what other leaders failed to do. It was more than being in the right place at the right time. God will put you in places where you cannot put yourself.
When David came home, the hometown folk were singing his praises. They remembered to keep the accolades of King Saul in the chorus but the verses were all about David defeating 10,000.
This sent Saul over the edge. There are personal haters in this life who cannot handle the success of others. They may have triumphs of their own but when they see you rise, they see it as a threat to their future achievements.
Saul's jealousy created an environment that forced David to either kill the king or run away from him. David chose the later. He ends up seeking refuge among his enemies. The ones he was fighting against now provide temporary protection. It was the kind of blessed day when you were more like wimp than a warrior.
David is bought before Achish, King of Gath. He began to pretend that he was short of a few sticks in a bundle of firewood. He pretended the fool, mad, insane, uncontrolled and dribbling on his beard. Archish responded that since there was no lack of fools in their territory David had to go.
There are times when running away from something takes more courage than staying. It takes more courage to remove yourself from an environment that encourages you to sin than do the wrong thing. It takes more courage to walk away from a fight than to raise your fists; it takes more courage to keep your mouth shut than return a curse; it takes more courage to walk out of the bar, put down the drink, put out the cigarette, walk away from the dime bag or say no to a midnight bootie call.
David pretended the fool instead of praising God. Is this not the same David who sang that God responds to our praise and thanksgiving? Enter His gates with thanksgiving and into His courts with praise. (Psalm 100:4) Praise and thanksgiving are key elements to gain access to the presence of God.
Thanksgiving not just because you feel grateful but because it is an act that will get you through the door. Praise, not because you feel like praising God but it is an act that get you into the place where cases are heard, deliberation takes place and God handles the business of the Kingdom. Praise gets you into the throne room to the seat of Power.
Maybe David forgot his own sermons or forgot how God responds to Praise. God has a resting place in our praise. (Psalm 22:3) Yet you are enthroned as the Holy One; God inhabits the praises of His people. O thou that inhabits the praises of Israel. Praise is where God lives. It is the permanent address of the God who is available to act on ones behalf.
Maybe David didn't have enough time for a praise strategy or just accessed God's power with quiet praise. The text is silent. However, it only takes a minute. Paul and Silas prayed and praise God at midnight. The Lord posted bail before morning.
When blessed days find you running to your enemies for protection - praise God first. When on blessed days you feel you have to act insane to be successful - praise God first. When on blessed days the environment is not supportive of your true Christian character, remember to Praise God.
Praising God is the evidence that God is welcomed into your situation. Praising God unleashes God's liberating power that scatters our fears, strengthens our weaknesses, explodes stress, and overthrows our doubts.
There may be blessed days when don't feel like praising God. Praise God anyhow! Start your blessed day praising God for the new mercies you see.
Praise God at the end of your blessed day because he will give you rest.