Praise and thanksgiving reaches its highest expression when our circumstances are most difficult. Praise is our vote God is up to something good in our relationships even when we don’t know what it is. It’s the answer to the unanswered questions of God’s will for our lives.
Unlikely People Who Gave Thanks and Praise in the Bible
- Job -Experienced a series of immense personal losses and setbacks.At this, Job got up and tore his robe and shaved his head. Then he fell to the ground in worship and said: “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised.” In all this, Job did not sin by charging God with wrongdoing. (Job 1:20-22)Encouragement for Us: Praise and thanksgiving reaches its highest expression when our circumstances are most difficult.
- Leah-Lived with the daily heartache of a husband that didn’t love her.”When the Lord saw that Leah was not loved, he opened her womb, but Rachel was barren…She conceived again, and when she gave birth to a son she said, “This time I will praise the Lord.” So she named him Judah.” Genesis 29: 31, 35Encouragement for Us: Praise is our vote God is up to something good in our relationships even when we don’t know what it is.
- David-Surrounded by his enemies he was forced to live in a cave.”I am in the midst of lions; I lie among ravenous beasts-men whose teeth are spears and arrows, whose tongues are sharp swords…I will praise you, O Lord, among the nations; I will sing of you among the peoples. For great is your love, reaching to the heavens; our faithfulness reaches to the skies. Be exalted, O God, above the heavens; let your glory be over all the earth.’Encouragement for Us: Praise and thanksgiving is our ultimate defense against the attacks and persecution we can suffer in life.
- Jeremiah-Called to minister in a time of national disaster, upheaval and suffering.”I remember my affliction and my wandering, the bitterness and the gall. I well remember them, and my soul is downcast within me. Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope: Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.” Job 3:19-24Encouragement for Us: Praise and thanksgiving remind us God’s faithfulness and mercy are still at work even in our most desperate hours.
- Mary-Confused and struggling with God’s plan for her life.”How will this be,” Mary asked the angel, “since I am a virgin?” The angel answered, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God. “My soul glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has been mindful of the humble state of his servant. From now on all generations will call me blessed, for the Mighty One has done great things for me-holy is His Name.” Luke 1:34-45, 46-49Encouragement for Us: Praise and thanksgiving are the answer to the unanswered questions of God’s will for our lives.
- Jesus-Wept at the graveside of one his closest friends on earth.”Jesus wept. Then the Jews said, “See how he loved him!” But some of them said, “Could not he who opened the eyes of the blind man have kept this man from dying?”…Jesus, once more deeply moved, came to the tomb. It was a cave with a stone laid across the entrance. “Take away the stone,” he said…Then Jesus said, “Did I not tell you that if you believed, you would see the glory of God?” So they took away the stone. Then Jesus looked up and said, “Father, I thank you that you have heard me. I knew that you always hear me, but I said this for the benefit of the people standing here, that they may believe that you sent me.” John 11: 35-36, 38-41Encouragement for Us: Praise and thanksgiving reminds us the glory of God will have the final word over death, grief and loss.
- Paul-Imprisoned and alone because of his faithfulness to the Gospel.”I thank my God every time I remember you…Now I want you to know, brothers, that what has happened to me has really served to advance the gospel. As a result, it has become clear throughout the whole palace guard[b] and to everyone else that I am in chains for Christ. Because of my chains, most of the brothers in the Lord have been encouraged to speak the word of God more courageously and fearlessly.” (Philippians 1:3, 12)Encouragement for Us: Praise and thanksgiving release the power of God to turn into good what others intended for evil.
Remember, marriage is for better for worse for keeps.
For Better, For Worse, For Keeps Ministries © 2013