Christmastime Day Three
December 28, 2018
By Elaine Friedrich
Written by Rustin Parsons
Praise the Lord
1 Praise the Lord.
Praise the Lord from the heavens;
praise him in the heights above.
2 Praise him, all his angels;
praise him, all his heavenly hosts.
3 Praise him, sun and moon;
praise him, all you shining stars.
4 Praise him, you highest heavens
and you waters above the skies.
5 Let them praise the name of the Lord,
for at his command they were created,
6 and he established them for ever and ever—
he issued a decree that will never pass away.
7 Praise the Lord from the earth,
you great sea creatures and all ocean depths,
8 lightning and hail, snow and clouds,
stormy winds that do his bidding,
9 you mountains and all hills,
fruit trees and all cedars,
10 wild animals and all cattle,
small creatures and flying birds,
11 kings of the earth and all nations,
you princes and all rulers on earth,
12 young men and women,
old men and children.
13 Let them praise the name of the Lord,
for his name alone is exalted;
his splendor is above the earth and the heavens.
14 And he has raised up for his people a horn,
the praise of all his faithful servants,
of Israel, the people close to his heart.
While lying on the trampoline of a sailing catamaran in the middle of the Atlantic, 1000 miles from any land, counting the shooting starts with my three kids, it was easy to see the amazing awesomeness of God’s creation…and praise Him. Every star, every planet, every cloud, wave, raindrop, and gust of wind exist because of His will. The stillness of our lives at this time made it easy to acknowledge and praise God.
We saw Him in the great things: the stars, the meteors, the moon as it progressed through its phases, and the vastness of the ocean. And we praised Him. We saw Him in the small things: the patterns on the water from a gust of wind, the Portuguese Man-O-War jellyfish that use that wind to sail, and the tiny bird that hitched a ride with us for a few hundred miles. And we praised Him.
As we have settled back into our “land life” and the hustle and bustle of work, school, sports, friends, and family, we have found we have not been praising Him as often. We must consciously take time to admire His creation and to praise Him.
The sun setting in the winter sky and the sure knowledge that it will rise again in the morning deserves our praise for Him. The migration of the birds and the swaying of the pines in the breeze deserves our praise for Him. The laughter of my kids as they recount a tale from school and the ever-increasing marks on our “measuring wall” where we record their heights deserves our praise for Him. As the perfect creator of all the universe, He alone deserves our praise.
The Psalmist understood that the praising of God was not for His benefit but for ours. Psalm 148 lists the things that praise God: the stars, the oceans, the mountains, all the creatures on the earth, and all the people, young and old. Everything exists because of God’s decree. His majesty is on full display if we just slow down and take the time to see. Praising God reminds us that in the grand, awesome creation of the universe, God created us in His image and that he loves us with an intensity and depth that we cannot comprehend. His endless love became flesh in Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior! Hallelujah!
This season my family will slow down. Put down our devices. Turn off the TV. Take a break from school and friends and acknowledge the greatness of God. His majesty is all around us, and His love is always reaching for us.
Praise the Lord!