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Perpetual Worship

I don't know about you, but when circumstances or people aren't going my way (yes, I said people), I complain and complain and complain.  As if complaining is going to change anything!  Circumstances can't give push back, but people can.  Any parents out there notice that when you complain to your children, especially teens and beyond, the very thing you complain about, they will do even more - exercising their will.

But aren't we as parents exercising our will towards our children.

Now I'm not talking about discipline where correction is indeed deemed necessary, but more those areas in our lives where people aren't fitting into our own desires - and that just isn't isolated to the parent child relationship.  It can be any relationship!

But don't we, as children of God, exercise our own will and complain to the air or under our breath or to anyone who will listen about just about anything!

All things are done according to God's plan and decision; 
and God chose us to be his own people in union with Christ 
because of his own purpose, based on what he had decided from the very beginning.
Ephesians 1:11

And there you have it!  When we complain about anything, we are complaining about God's plan and decisions!

Here in the Northeast there isn't anyone who is not complaining about this cold, dreary May we have been having.  The weather is somewhat nice during the week, but EVERY weekend it is cold and rainy.  And I am leading the charge in the complaint department.  :-/

I also seem to be continuing in my series of one disappointment after the other after the other.  In my head and out loud I'm complaining, "THIS IS RIDICULOUS!".

This weekend was a culmination of all of the above where I exclaimed, "I'm over it!"

But yesterday, as I was riding past a hospital I thought to myself, "But Karen, you aren't in a hospital bed suffering.  You aren't laying next to your sick, dying child or spouse in the hospital."  And I was convicted...

Do all things without grumbling or questioning.
Philippians 2:14

Give thanks in all circumstances; 
for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
1 Thessalonians 5:18

I'm not saying that this side of Heaven this is easy.  But I believe the Psalmist has shown us how to react in frustrating or difficult situations...

Vindicate me, O God, and defend my cause
    against an ungodly people,
from the deceitful and unjust man
    deliver me!
2 For you are the God in whom I take refuge;
    why have you rejected me?
Why do I go about mourning
    because of the oppression of the enemy?

3 Send out your light and your truth;
    let them lead me;
let them bring me to your holy hill
    and to your dwelling!
4 Then I will go to the altar of God,
    to God my exceeding joy,
and I will praise you with the lyre,
    O God, my God.

5 Why are you cast down, O my soul,
    and why are you in turmoil within me?
Hope in God; for I shall again praise him,
    my salvation and my God.
Psalm 43

I'm sure we have all felt rejected or forgotten by God.  And it is even okay to express that as the Psalmists do!  Even Jesus cried out, "My God, My God, Why have you forsaken me?"  Jesus did not sin in saying this and neither do we.

I am currently reading my dear friend Alicia Ruggieri's book, A Holy Passion:  A Novel of David Brainerd and Jerusha Edwards.  In it the character Jerusha has discovered something distressing and states...

"As is often the event on such occasions, my inner turmoil turns into a kind of prayer, if pouring out all that is in my heart may be called a proper prayer.  'Tis directed toward God; I take consolation in that, despite its informality... And in the midst of my distress, I sense a Presence with me, comforting me."

Isn't that indeed what the Psalmists do?  Even though they complained or lamented to the Lord, deep down they knew they were not forsaken... The Psalmists listed out their complaints and then, almost as if rebuking themselves, bring to memory who God is, that He has not forsaken them, and I'm sure also felt His presence.

Why are you cast down, O my soul,
    and why are you in turmoil within me?
Hope in God; for I shall again praise him,
    my salvation and my God.

In Psalm 43 the Lord teaches us about perpetual worship through His precious Word.  When we have hidden God's Word in our hearts, when we pour out all our thoughts to Him, He will indeed send forth His light and His Truth to lead us to His Holy Hill where we will feel His presence and be filled with exceeding joy.

Trials are opportunities to perpetually worship our Lord and King.

I think I shared this in a previous blog post, but when my son-in-law, who was my daughter's boyfriend at the time, was deployed, I had created several Scripture-laden prayers that I would pray for Garrett every day.  If I could've sweat drops of blood I would have with the intensity of my worship of the Lord through praying Scriptures over my son-in-law.  Unbeknownst to me at the moment it happened, my son-in-law's life was spared not once but three times, quite miraculously.  Like there is no other explanation why he is still alive.  I know without a shadow of a doubt it was the Lord answering my prayers.  I can honestly say that although Garrett's deployments were two of the hardest seasons of my life, I felt the Lord's calming presence and a sense of profound peace because I was perpetually worshipping Him through praying Scripture and taking God at His Word.

In all circumstances of life really, God's Truth should be upmost in our thoughts and attitudes - a posture of perpetual worship.

The Lord tells us, each day has enough trouble of its own.  But what if we looked at this verse not with fear and trembling, but looked at each day as an opportunity to perpetually worship our Lord and Savior and to feel His comforting presence.

From the rising of the sun to its setting, 
the name of the LORD is to be praised!
Psalm 113:3 

 You might find me on these link-ups:
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  1. Oh, there is so much wonderful encouragement here! I can only imagine how scary it was when your son-in-law was deployed, and I know it was surely God hearing your earnest cries that spared his life. Oh, for more praying mothers like you, my friend! The verse you mentioned was on my heart the other day (why art thou cast down, oh, my soul), and later in the day I felt the Holy Spirit nudging me to read a Psalm, and that is the very Psalm I turned to! Gratitude surely lifts us up out of our darkness, and I am so thankful those Psalmists revealed their humanity to us through their words. They weren't always on the mountaintop, nor did they claim to be. They were real, and that gives me hope. So thankful for you, dear friend, and for your faithfulness to share so transparently. I am faithfully praying for you!

    1. Hi Cheryl! Thank you so much for your constant encouragement. I truly believe you are my biggest cheerleader! You spur me on to continue writing. I am so grateful for your friendship.

      And thank you so much for adding to the conversation. I always value any wisdom you leave here.

      And I you. Your prayers mean so much to me.

      Praying the Lord's abundant blessings upon you this weekend.

  2. This reminds me of Amy Grant's song Better Than a Hallelujah :). Learning to constantly commune with God is one of my goals.

    1. Hi Anita, Oh! I'll have to check that song out. I don't think I've heard that one before. :-)

      A very lofty goal for all of us indeed!

      Thanks so much for stopping by.

  3. I like the verse about "not grumbling or complaining" but I think it really adds power to what Paul is saying. the next part of it says " so that you may become blameless and pure, “children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation.”Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky as you hold firmly to the word of life." Paul reminds us that not complaining is part of showing the unbelieving world that we are different... that GOD is different and that He alone has "the word of life." so not complaining isn't just so that we will be happier and more content... it's so that others can know Jesus!!

    1. Hi Karen, Wow! Your words just convicted me in a powerful way. I very much appreciate you sharing them here. I've never looked at it that way before, but you are so right!

      I read something this morning that pertained to marriages, but the basic gist was to "do the right thing for the next 30 seconds" which for the most part meant holding your tongue. I'd say that can be applied to complaining as well!

      Your visit has blessed me. :-)

  4. I wonder if the main purpose of any inner turmoil is to turn our thoughts and hearts toward God? it works, mostly!

    1. Sue, I think you are right, on both counts! :-)

      Thanks so much for stopping by.

  5. "In all circumstances of life really, God's Truth should be upmost in our thoughts and attitudes - a posture of perpetual worship." I think you have hit the nail on the head, Karen. If we keep His truth always before us, we will be more likely to pray without ceasing and to trust Him in hard circumstances. We know that He knows best and will accomplish His purposes in our lives. What a beautiful story of protection for your son-in-law as you fervently prayed for Him. Prayer is so important in our lives. A friend and I just finished studying the passage in Ephesians on the armor of God. At the very end of the list we are shown how prayer is imperative as we put on and use the armor of God. Blessings to you! Thanks for sharing with us at the #LMMLinkup!

    1. Hi Gayl, I so appreciate your thoughtful comments. They bless me very much.

      Indeed and Amen!

      Yes, prayer certainly seals everything we do.

      You are very welcome!

  6. Praises for the answered prayers for your SIL and also thank him for his service. God does work and give miracles, I have no doubt. Prayers are answered daily for people. Thank you for sharing your story. I also identify with being thankful for all the small what-if's that hubby and I don't have in our life. I am grateful for each day as I age. Thanks for sharing.

    Peabea from Peabea Scribbles

    1. Hi Pea Bea, I will!

      You are very welcome.


      Thanks so much for always taking the time to comment. I appreciate it very much.

  7. Beautiful and inspiring message!! It's hard to trust Him through difficult circumstances, but He is always so good! And prayer SO important!

    1. Hi Rachel, Thank you for your kind words. I appreciate it!

      Indeed and Amen!

      Thanks for stopping by.

  8. Thanks for linking up and sharing this encouragement at Booknificent Thursday on!


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