Who Are You Praising?
The word praise means “to publically recognize a person’s character and/or actions.” When you praise someone, you boast about who they are and/or something they accomplished. If you stop and think about it for a moment, there is a lot of praise thrown around in our world today. Parents praise their children when they obey. Teachers praise children who do well on a test or assignment. Coaches praise their athletes when they give 100% and play their position well in a game. Police and fire chiefs praise their officers when they show courage and save lives. Employers praise employees who go above and beyond their job description. Fans praise their favorite singers, movie stars, and athletes through many different means. There are a lot of people all around the world today praising other people. But, there are not enough people in our world today praising God. Why do people struggle to praise the Lord? To answer that question, we need to examine Psalm 103.
1st – David reminds himself to praise the Lord.
“Let all that I am praise the Lord; with my whole heart, I will praise his holy name.” Psalm 103:1 NLT
Why did David have to remind himself to praise God? Because David knew that he could go through his day and forget to give God the praise He deserved. Understand, David wrote Psalm 103 late in his life when he was a very busy man. David was a king, a commander and chief, a husband, a father, and a friend. He had a lot on his plate; he had lots to do each day. So, David reminds himself to stop and give God the praise He deserves every day.
It is important to note here that David did not want to give God halfhearted praise; he wanted to give the Lord wholehearted praise! In Psalm 103:1, David calls upon himself to praise God with his entire being. David wanted to show God love and boast of the Lord’s good character and good giving with his entire heart, mind, soul, and body!
After he reminds himself to praise God daily…
2nd – David reminds himself to remember the good things the Lord is doing for him.
“Let all that I am praise the Lord; may I never forget the good things he does for me.” Psalm 103:2 NLT
Why did David want to remember the good things the Lord is doing for him? Because thankful people praise the Lord! That’s why we need to allot time each day to count our blessings, which is what David does in verses 3-5.
“He forgives all my sins and heals all my diseases. He redeems me from death and crowns me with love and tender mercies. He fills my life with good things. My youth is renewed like the eagle’s!” Psalm 103:3–5 NLT
David praised the Lord because he remembered how the Lord was…
- Forgiving him
- Healing him
- Protecting him
- Crowning (surrounding) him with love and mercy
- Enriching his life
- Strengthening him
After he counts his personal blessings…
3rd – David tells us how the Lord blesses all those who fear Him.
“The Lord gives righteousness and justice to all who are treated unfairly. He revealed his character to Moses and his deeds to the people of Israel. The Lord is compassionate and merciful, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love. He will not constantly accuse us, nor remain angry forever. He does not punish us for all our sins; he does not deal harshly with us, as we deserve. For his unfailing love toward those who fear him is as great as the height of the heavens above the earth. He has removed our sins as far from us as the east is from the west. The Lord is like a father to his children, tender and compassionate to those who fear him. For he knows how weak we are; he remembers we are only dust. Our days on earth are like grass; like wildflowers, we bloom and die. The wind blows, and we are gone— as though we had never been here. But the love of the Lord remains forever with those who fear him. His salvation extends to the children’s children of those who are faithful to his covenant, of those who obey his commandments!” Psalm 103:6–18 NLT
In Psalm 103:6-18, David tells us…
- God looks out for us when we are treated unfairly. Vs. 6
- He is compassionate, merciful, and slow to anger. Vs. 8
- His love is unfailing; it is as high as the heavens. Vs. 11
- God removes our sins as far as the east is from the west. Vs. 12
- He is like a father who loves his children. Vs. 13–14
- He gives salvation to us. Vs. 17
Now, David’s list of blessings from the Lord in verses 6-18 is not supposed to be an exhaustive list. David is not trying to tell us everything the Lord has done and is doing for us. He is just listing enough good stuff to prompt us to give our good Heavenly Father the praise He rightly deserves.
Well, after he tells us how the Lord blesses those who fear Him…
4th – David calls everyone in heaven and on earth to praise the Lord.
“The Lord has made the heavens his throne; from there he rules over everything. Praise the Lord, you angels, you mighty ones who carry out his plans, listening for each of his commands. Yes, praise the Lord, you armies of angels who serve him and do his will! Praise the Lord, everything he has created, everything in all his kingdom. Let all that I am praise the Lord.” Psalm 103:19–22 NLT
Who should you praise the most? God! For, He is the Creator and Ruler of the universe and He gives good gifts to all those who fear (reverence) Him.
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