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Praising the Lord has ever been to me one of the most inspiring and exalting of themes. Oh! How I love to praise Him and hear Him praised.
It has been my privilege, on several occasions, to witness the never-to-be-forgotten scene of 1,000 saints standing on their feet with uplifted hands, tears streaming down their faces, praising the Lord with all their might until the great volume of thunderous praises blended into a sound like rushing mighty waters as it rolled majestically heavenward. It went up as one voice, of one people who were one in heart and adoration of the most high God and His glorious Son, Jesus Christ.
It is when praising the Lord in this way, as at no other time, that my spirit catches the greatest revelation--the greater vision of the mighty, omnipotent King of the Ages, high and lifted up. It is then that the very atmosphere seems electric, charged with the mighty power of the great God, and I catch the sound of His chariot wheels leaping over the mountains, ever coming nearer as His saints continue to adore Him, till I hear the stately steppings of the King in the midst of His holy tabernacle--then, as the cloud of glorious adoration still rises from the hearts of the people, I see Him robed with honor, crowned with glory, seated upon the jewelled throne of adoration that His people have built for Him by their praises.
The Lord inhabits the praises of His people. Where real praise is, there God is.
It is impossible to overestimate the power, victory, blessing, healing, encouragement and inspiration embodied in this wonderful secret of praising the Lord.
PRAISE THE LORD AT ALL TIMES "Oh! but you know that I could never put anything on, I could never praise the Lord unless I feel like it," someone exclaims.
Unless you feel like it! Oh! Is that the gauge by which you measure your offerings of praise? Is that the foundation upon which your Christian experience is based?
My dear sister, feelings are a poor and very uncertain guide upon which to rely when it comes to praising the Lord or any other Christian experience. Only one man in the Bible that I know of went by feeling; that was dear old Isaac, and you remember how he felt the hands and arms of Jacob, his son, and how deceived he was.
Oh, dear hearts, I encourage you to praise Him at "all times"and let His praise "be continually in your mouth," not because you happen to feel like it, but because He is worthy. Praise Him whether you feel like it or not, and you soon will feel like it.
Why, it is impossible for me to lift up my hands and begin to praise and adore my Master without a downpour of His blessing that is as rain to the thirsty fields and flowers or as the anointing oil upon my head, running down to the borders of my garments.
"Let everything that hath breath praise the Lord." Why, according to David, the only excuse you have for not praising the Lord is being out of breath!
Some may claim, "Oh, Sister, I praise Him in my heart. I could never shout aloud or be demonstrative. It is not my make-up or disposition."
Beloved, when you have put on your beautiful garments of praise, you are lifted above your own "make-up" and "disposition" and swing far out into the realm of the Spirit. As for praising the Lord in your heart, why, your heart is no different from anyone else's. When it gets full of glorious praises and adoration and He becomes so real, so fair as to be altogether lovely, the chiefest of 10,000 to your soul, your heart will run over, and you will shout His praises, and your voice will be blended with the voices of all the other redeemed ones and soar upward to the Lamb who sits upon the throne.
THERE'S POWER IN PRAISE Besides blessing you and ministering to the Lord, your praise has the potential to clear the spiritual atmosphere in a meeting. Let's look at an example. Two saints attend the same meeting. One enters with a long face, takes her seat, looks solemnly about, and if the meeting seems a little stiff, in need of a blessing, lacking in praise or "tied up," this dear one begins to be burdened and sigh:
"Oh, Lord, what is the matter here? There is such a binding spirit, such a power of darkness. It seems as though the room were filled with demons. Help us, Lord!" Immediately every eye and every thought are directed to the devil, to darkness and to binding spirits and are no longer on Jesus.
When we advertise and meditate upon the strength of the devil, we underestimate the power of the great I AM, the Mighty Conqueror who never lost a battle. Such despondency and burdened agonizing is contagious, and soon everyone is moaning and crying and miserable, and it is not until someone begins "seeing and praising Jesus" that the cloud lifts.
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