Tag: praise

Dale’s Rules for Life: Celebrate Everything (Even the Small Stuff)

Dale’s Rules for Life: Celebrate Everything (Even the Small Stuff)

Encouragment
I have these rules, 27 so far, this is number three. Celebrate everything (even the small stuff). Yeah! Fist bump time. Celebrations are important. They may mark milestone events - Birthdays (especially those that end in zero), weddings, important anniversaries, the birth of a child, a new job, retirement, graduation, or the completion of some large goal. Those are the huge celebrations. There are also the many moments of celebration when we stand, cheer, clap, dance, and generally make a fool of ourselves. Go Cubs! WooHoo! Notice the tagline for this rule - even the small stuff. That’s the part most people miss. The small stuff are the victories, blessings, accomplishments, and welcome surprises that cross our path each and every day. Granted, these celebrations are not as elaborate or
reThink48 – Whatever is Praiseworthy

reThink48 – Whatever is Praiseworthy

Encouragment
For the past eight weeks, we’ve been reThinking Paul’s instruction found in Philippians. “Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.” (Philippians 4:8, NASB95)  Our goal has been to reframe this verse and open our eyes to look for these attributes. To see their totality in God and the glimmers we often miss in each other. Before we close this series, however, there are two topics yet to consider- Worthy of Praise and Dwell on These Things. Worthy of Praise Paul’s instruction to dwell on what is worthy of praise is like a wrapper that contains all the others. While we struggled to understand a few words in
Like a Goldfish in Water

Like a Goldfish in Water

Encouragment
They say that a goldfish doesn’t notice the water around it. That living in water is so natural and common that they take no thought of it. I wonder sometimes if the same isn’t true for us. Could there be something about our lives that is so common that we don’t take thought of it very often? The direct metaphor between fish and us would be the air around us or the earth beneath our feet. But I think that there is something even more pervasive or even prevalent than those examples. To perceive this “thing” we must for a moment shut off the busyness of life, push aside our preconceptions of the world around us, and lay down our previous experiences. In short, we must look past all the distractions of what we regularly see for just a moment. So often we see the Bible, (no that’s not
Better Than Anything

Better Than Anything

Encouragment
Life can be nasty at times. Things come our way that seems unfair and undeserved. We read God’s promises and wonder what we did wrong. This is more than just having a bad day, we’re talking bad that seems to have no end. We feel buried under the rubble of despair, hopelessness, depression, sorrow, worry, grief, anger, and injustice. In those dark days, life seems to have little value. David of Goliath fame had those days too. God had promised David a kingdom. He had conquered and seen victories by the hand of God. He gained notoriety and prestige in the eyes of the people. The king’s son was his best friend and Jonathan knew that David would one day replace his father. Jealous whispers turned the king against David to the point of wanting him dead. Instead of taking the fight to the kin
The Soundtrack of Our Lives

The Soundtrack of Our Lives

Encouragment
Have you ever watched a movie and intentionally paid attention to the background music while the story is unfolding? Movie makers have learned that music unlocks emotions. They’ll use ominous tones to warn us when something bad might be just around the corner. We may hear a soulful violin to evoke sadness or a bright trumpet to indicate victory. The Psalms are like that, there are Psalms that touch our sadness, our fears, our anger, our hope, and our love for God. Consider the opening verses of Psalm 66, “Shout joyfully to God, all the earth; Sing the glory of His name; Make His praise glorious. Say to God, “How awesome are Your works! Because of the greatness of Your power Your enemies will give feigned obedience to You. “All the earth will worship You, And will sing praises to You
The Babylon Blues

The Babylon Blues

Encouragment, Worship
Imagine this. Your country has been overrun and conquered by a foreign power. Those not killed during the siege are chained together and marched far from home as slaves. You are expected to merge into their culture, their ideals, their way of life, and to worship their gods. Everything that once brought joy has been turned to dust. Where’s B.B. King and Lucille to sing the blues when you need them? While those Jewish folks enslaved to a foreign conqueror did not know the rhythms and soulful sound of modern day blues they did sing about their despair and their hope. Consider Psalm 42. As the deer pants for the water brooks So my soul pants for You, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God;  When shall I come and appear before God? My tears have been my food day and night,
Its MONDAY!

Its MONDAY!

Archive
In 1966 the Mamas and the Papas recorded Monday, Monday which includes the lines: Monday Monday, can't trust that day, Monday Monday, sometimes it just turns out that way Oh Monday morning, you gave me no warning of what was to be Oh Monday Monday, how could you leave and not take me. Every other day, every other day, Every other day of the week is fine, yeah But whenever Monday comes, but whenever Monday comes You can find me cryin' all of the time We’ve all been there. We’ve all felt the weight that seems to descend when Monday morning comes. Why is that?  Is it only the beginning of the work week or something deeper.  Perhaps its the reminder that our lives are not our own.  For two days,  we could be anywhere and do anything that we wanted.  But when Monday comes our lives r
Get Praising!

Get Praising!

Encouragment, Worship
There is something about music, particularly praise songs, that seeps deep into our souls. A few months back my grandfather passed away. During the funeral my grandmother sang along with every hymn without looking at the words. Not unusual until you understand that she has dementia. She barely understood why she was in church that day. She easily gets stuck in loops of thought, like asking umpteen times how old my newest granddaughter is. Repeatedly reading the Sunday funnies. Calling just about every male in our family “dad” and always desiring to “go home” even though she was at home. But she did not get stuck during the hymns and sang all of the verses to “It is Well” without glancing at the hymnal. It reminded me of Psalm 33:1-5.   Rejoice in the Lord, O you righteous! For