I must admit it.  Can’t deny it any longer– as much as I’d like to.  No hiding.  Need to bring it out into the open.  What gives?  This sounds serious.  It is.  My prayer life is in shambles.  Too many requests, begging God to act and give me what I want.  After all, I know best!  So I’d like to think!  Seriously, here’s the rub.  Praise needs to be front-and-center in my prayer life.

Why not read those last five psalms?  None are long.   You’ll see what I mean.  Like sturdy bookends, ‘Praise the Lord’, begins and ends each of those soaring songs.  At the very beginning, it’s praise time.  At the very end, it’s all about praise to God.  Nothing less.  That’s what I need.  More praise to the Lord.  More appreciation.  More thanks to Jesus.  More gratitude for the Holy Spirit.

Here’s something that none of us want to be– a phony.  Saying some nice words to God, but actually being manipulative, trying to make ‘brownie points’ with Him, hoping to grab some ‘goodies’ for us.  Know what I mean?  But we don’t want to be sham, counterfeit, self-centered Christians.  Do we?   That’s why I want more ‘hallelujah’s’ in my day…and night.

Hallelujah!  The Hebrew word for ‘praise the Lord’.   ‘Jah’ is the shortened form for God’s name, ‘Yahweh’.  ‘Hallal’ is the verb ‘to praise’.  So, ‘praise Yahweh!’  That’s it!   The Hebrew word ‘hallal’ has a bit of an edge to it.  Yes, it means to praise, but it also carries the connotation of ‘to shine’ and ‘to boast’, to ‘rave about and celebrate’.

That’s where the rub comes in.  Most of praise in this world shines below the clouds.  Rarely above.  Recently we endured a ‘temperature inversion’, as the meteorologists call it.  Where the warmer air above traps the colder air below, giving us dirty air and fog.  Rarely happens, but we had it for almost a week.  Too bad the ‘temperature inversion’ of our selfishness and self-absorption isn’t likewise as rare.   It’s epidemic.  Praise… of ourselves.  Wonderment… at human control over all of life.  What man can do.  Thanks for what money can buy.

God deserves all our praise.  I want to bookend my life with His praises.  From start to finish.   Beginning to end.  Who cares what others may think?  Who cares when we get laughed at and mocked?  Too bad, so sad.  Makes me think– maybe God cares.  Maybe He loves to hear His children singing His praises all day long!  Maybe He matters more than anything else.  No maybe about it.  None whatsoever!

Prayer:  Thank you, Lord, for all you are.  We want to praise you all day long.  In Jesus’ name.  Amen.


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