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Words from within

Stop for just a moment in your busy day and consider what your words of praise have been today. Not the praise you give another, but the praise you lift to the Lord of Lords and King of Kings. I get really put off by words like "God's blessing be upon you" when it seems to be words that come out like they are memorized or simply spoken out of habit. Sometimes I think we become so familiar with saying something like "Bless God!" or "Thank You Jesus!" that we almost speak them without any really thought behind them! Consider how we might feel when all we hear from someone is, "I love you" or "You are so special to me", but then never really see the love or "special" connection displayed. The words become hollow when spoken so frequently without any really action behind them, don't they? The same could be true of our worship!

Blessed are you, God of Israel, our father from of old and forever. To you, O God, belong the greatness and the might, the glory, the victory, the majesty, the splendor; Yes! Everything in heaven, everything on earth; the kingdom all yours! You've raised yourself high over all. Riches and glory come from you, you're ruler over all; You hold strength and power in the palm of your hand to build up and strengthen all. And here we are, O God, our God, giving thanks to you, praising your splendid Name. (I Chronicles 29:10-13)

David often spoke publicly of his God's greatness. Whenever he did, he called attention to the characteristics of God he had observed in his own life and as he acted as the leader of the land. He knew God and he was not shy about revealing God's greatness in and through his life - even when he failed, he showed time and time again how God's grace overcame every stupid mistake he made.

- God's greatness and might. We are not to lose sight of the fact God's works are indeed noteworthy, but his presence is more noteworthy than all his works! We can see the display of his might, but we sense the awesomeness of his greatness! Look around and see the hills, trees, birds, and even the caterpillar creeping along on that leaf. All created by his hand - all display his greatness. His might is what makes him stand above all others. His ability to accomplish what he says is to be our focus. Truly God's greatness AND his might go hand in hand. One is the display of his creativity and the other is the display of his ability!

- God is worthy of glory. What we need to see is that God's greatness and might set him apart from any other god on this earth. Nothing and no one can fulfill what he has done. We are to proclaim the renown of God! To be able to do this, we have to see him as he is - we cannot have a second-hand knowledge of him. When we have first-hand knowledge of his greatness and might, it is a natural response to observe God is indeed "set apart" from other gods!

- Victory, majesty and splendor are his. No opponent stands a chance in his path. This should cause us to shout! What opponent stands in your way? It could be a habit, a person, or a circumstance beyond your control. God is bigger, more powerful, and all-consuming. Nothing stands in his way. When we think of majesty, we think of the distinction which comes with a person in a place of authority. Focus on God being in his right place in our lives - the place of authority. As long as he is, we know with assurance no opponent will stand in our way.

- God builds up and strengthens. Some think this "Christian" experience is some kind of "crutch" for a bunch of weakling individuals. I am not so sure they have ever walked in my shoes! In fact, I am far from weak! The greatest struggle I have is to NOT rely upon my own strength and allow his strength to come through in my life! The problem with my own strength is observed in its destructive power, not in its creative power. As a matter of fact, as long as I use my own strength, I only seem to run others down, run myself down, and basically steamroll my way through life. In Christ's power, my "self" takes on the right perspective.

I wonder if we really think about the words of honor and respect we "hurl" God's way on occasion? Are they intentional? Or are they spoken by 'rote' and merely words to "fill space". My own thoughts over the past couple of day have been on the idea of being intentional in my speech. Words are indeed "cheap" when they are spoken to only fill space - when they come from a deep well within, they just might carry a bit more refreshing and enjoyment! Just sayin!

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