Praise, praise and more praise…Advent 2013 Day 17

I’m sitting here at my computer, letting the past few days unwind and thinking what a long road I’ve traveled to get to this moment, the end of a semester interrupted by surgery and recovery and changes of all kind.  But I made it…and maybe I can get back to something a little more normal…at least for me.

And so I think it is right and fit that I should end this day with our reading — Psalm 8, the very first hymn of praise in the Book of Psalms:

O Lord, our Sovereign, how majestic is your name in all the earth!
You have set your glory above the heavens.

Out of the mouths of babes and infants you have founded a bulwark because of your foes,to silence the enemy and the avenger.

When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars that you have established;
what are human beings that you are mindful of them,
mortals that you care for them?

Yet you have made them a little lower than God,
and crowned them with glory and honor.

You have given them dominion over the works of your hands;
you have put all things under their feet,
all sheep and oxen, and also the beasts of the field,
the birds of the air, and the fish of the sea,
whatever passes along the paths of the seas.

O Lord, our Sovereign, how majestic is your name in all the earth!

The beauty of unfettered praise, that is what Psalm 8 is all about.  And our text today is the only hymn of praise in the biblical text that is composed completely as a direct address to God.  And thispsalm-8is not just about seeing God in the sunset — this is nature and all the things of the world in witness of God’s greatness.

Personally, I don’t spend enough time in praise and I often feel that we do not spend enough time praising God in worship.  Being Baptist, I lean towards the sin and confession of sins side of the equation.  And then there are all those complications with the word praise — where its association with “praise bands” and “praise music” makes it, in some worship circles, one of those words you are not quite comfortable using.

But today, where I sit, praise is in order.  Praise for health, praise for safety, praise for a good outcome in a difficult situation, praise for completing a semester that might never have happened without God’s help.

So today, I will praise with the words of Psalm 8.  Thanks be to God.

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