The pathways to praise God are all around us — we just have to open our eyes and hearts to engage them.
One pathway to praise is to look at creation and marvel at the detail of it. From the stars of the Milky Way to the tiniest seed, there is wonder in creation.
Another pathway is to look at the character of God as described in the Word of God. Psalm 145 is full of verses of praise for God’s character. Let’s look at a few:
“Great is the Lord and most worthy of praise; his greatness no one can fathom.” (vs.2)
Imagine the greatest thing you can and then realize that God is greater still. His greatness is beyond anything our finite minds can imagine. When I stand at the foot of the mountains, I’m filled with awe and wonder. The view from mountaintops takes my breath away.
“The Lord is gracious and compassionate; slow to anger and rich in love.” (vs. 8 )
This sentence is packed with descriptions of God: gracious, compassionate, patient, and loving.
God is gracious, reaching to us in love whether we deserve it or not. His forgiveness toward us is as breath-taking as the majesty of the mountains.
Has God shown compassion when you’ve needed comfort? One friend who recovered from brain surgery explained this as seeing God as someone she can crawl up in His lap and feel loved, like a child going to the tender parent for comfort, accepted and resting in His love.
God is rich in love. Even when we neglect to praise him, his love is there, echoing throughout the universe and pulsing within our hearts. He accepts us as we are with unconditional love.
God is slow to anger. We cry out in exasperation “How long, O Lord?” at pain and injustices, yet he is patient until he is ready to move.
“The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth.” (v.18 )
The promise of his presence is such a comfort. He will not abandon us. After all, he is Immanuel, “God with us.”
Looking at the character of God leads us to praise, taking our focus off ourselves.
Psalm 145 shows God’s character like a multi-faceted diamond. Sometimes light shines on one facet making His love more noticeable while another time the situations of life shine on His compassion.
God does not change. Our perspective and situation in life changes revealing different facets of the same perfectly cut diamond of God’s character.
“My mouth will speak in praise of the Lord. Let every creature praise his holy name forever and ever.” (vs. 21)
If you can, take a moment to read and mediate on Psalm 145. Consider the different characteristics of God.
What pathways to praise God do you embrace?