I will extol the Lord at all times; His praise will always be on my lips.
As I read this in my devotions this week and highlighted it with my favorite marker, I had to stop and ask myself if I allow this verse to be true in my life. I would love to say that it is; but that isn't always the case. It made me think of one of my favorite songs and how I love to belt out the lyrics about how His praise will ever be on my lips. But then the conviction hit hard. Gulp. Insert big swallow here. I mean, I love to praise God, I love to worship Him. I love to thank Him for the good things He has done. But His praise is not always on my lips. Sometimes my lips carry words of disgust, of anger and of pride. Sometimes I complain, am ungrateful and argumentative. But I want to be like the Psalmist David when he so boldly exclaims that the praise of his Lord will always be on his lips! I don't want to be known as someone who is always grumbling or gossiping. I don't want to be known as the one who never has anything nice to say and is always negative.
One of my favorite songs is Desert Song by Hillsong United. It says, "all of my life, in every season, you are still God, I have a reason to sing, I have a reason to worship." Not just in the prosperous and successful seasons, in every season. Not just in the seasons of plenty and joy, in every season. You see, we find it so easy to praise when life is going our way. But we should be praising God when we are going through a trial and when life doesn't make sense. Why? Because He draws near to us when we praise Him. Why? Because sometimes we have to endure a trial to encounter joy. Why? Because we know that victory is on its way.
Weeping may last for a night, but joy comes in the morning.
What a beautiful promise that we can cling too!
Easier said than done, I get it. An old DC Talk song has a lyric that says, "everyone prays when it comes to pain." But do you only want to pray and cry out to God only when you are in pain? The answer is no! We need to strive for His praise to be on our lips in all moments. I want to extol the Lord at all times. I want to sing of His excellent deeds. Praise Him when you are stuck in traffic, when you are late for work and when your dishes are a mile high. Praise Him when you are sick, when you are healthy and when your burdens are many. Praise Him in your loss and in your gain. Let His praise continually be on your lips. How beautiful to model this for our children as well. How it must bring a smile to our Saviors face when we teach our children to praise.
A lot of things are said about people when they die, but I want one thing to be said about me. That I was a woman who unashamedly loved Jesus and that His praise was always on my lips.