Praise Him Through It All!
By Tamara Doss –
As I sat among thousands at the Hillsong United concert, worshipping in unity to a God that is bigger than any of our earthly perceptions and life’s worst trials . . . it was obvious in that arena that we believed in a powerful, merciful, forgiving, and loving God and the Holy Spirit’s presence and power in our lives. Even in the dark, loud, synchronized arena, I heard the Holy Spirit speaking to my heart and soul. He reminded me of something I have spoken about in the past . . . “We must learn to praise Him through all circumstances.”
This act of praise can be challenging when facing life’s greatest trials and painful experiences like personal or professional disappointments, betrayal, illnesses, death of a loved one . . . but it is a step of faith that is truly a representation of Jesus Christ and an act of trust and recognition of His sacrifice for us!
Remember in the Garden of Gethsemane before Jesus was about to go to the cross? He was betrayed, so overwhelmed with grief that he sweat tears of blood. Luke 22:39-46 tells of how Jesus moved a little way from the three men to pray, and twice He asked His Father to remove the cup of wrath He was about to drink, but each time He submitted to the Father’s will. He was “exceedingly sorrowful unto death,” but God sent an angel from heaven to strengthen Him.
Jesus suffered much more than any of us could ever suffer on earth, and yet while he suffered, He submitted and surrendered to God’s Will. When we can learn to submit and surrender to God’s Will, not only will we be living in His will, but we can find victory in our lives and truly experience His perfect love and protection.
Of course, the most important impact of this night was the willingness of our Savior to die on the cross in our place in order to pay the penalty for our sins.
“God made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God” 2 Corinthians 5:21 (NIV).
Of Jesus’s last words on the cross, none is more important or more poignant than, “It is finished” John 19:30 (NIV). Found only in the Gospel of John, the Greek words translated “it is finished” means “paid in full.” When Jesus uttered those words, He was declaring the debt owed to His Father was wiped away completely and forever. Jesus eliminated the debt owed by mankind-the debt of sin-forever!
Do you accept His gift and sacrifice for you? “IT IS FINISHED.” Don’t let His sacrifice for you be in vain . . . Jesus said “It is Done.” He already bore your burdens. He already made a way for you to live within the Fruit of the Spirit. The challenge we face in this world is to recognize it and live accordingly in our daily lives. How we handle life’s crisis will change our hearts, our minds and our souls.
Death no longer lives because of Jesus’s sacrifice for us . . . He conquered death in John 16:33 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
He is the Prince of Peace . . . on earth as it is in Heaven. We are victorious when we live in peace, not death and darkness . . . that is not God’s will. He wants us to live victorious like we know, trust, and appreciate His sacrifice and His promises.
Don’t listen to the lies of the enemy when life gets hard. We shouldn’t live in life’s pain, chains, hurts and disappointments. We should live like we believe in the sacrifice of the cross . . . His ultimate act of Love and Victory . . .for us to live victorious . . . without shame, guilt, pain and regret! I encourage each of you to live today and everyday victoriously through His free and undeserved gift to you. Learn to praise Him through it all.