Path of Praise

Doug Smith picBY: DOUG SMITH

E-MAIL ADDRESS: doug-smith@comcast.net

BIBLE TEXT: But You are holy, enthroned in the praises of Israel. Our fathers trusted in you; They trusted, and you delivered them. Psalm 22:3-4

PERSONAL REFLECTION:
Earlier this year I went on a backpacking trip with some guys from church. It was a grueling hike as we traversed up to one of the highest peaks in the Smoky Mountains. I had not prepared for the hike at all, so long before we reached the top I hit a wall—I was physically wiped out and wasn’t sure I could keep going.

We finally made it to the top and set up camp for the night. I woke up the next morning even more exhausted and sore to boot. We packed up our gear and started our descent back down the mountain when all of a sudden the skies opened up and let loose a torrential downpour (It just kept getting better!). It rained so hard the deluge got under my rain gear and soaked my clothes. The flooded path drenched our shoes and socks. But about an hour into the descent, soaked to the skin and totally miserable, I could hear these words ringing out through the storm from behind me:

When I survey the wondrous cross
On which the prince of glory died
My richest gain I count but loss
And pour contempt on all my pride

It was Pastor Andrew singing one of my favorite old hymns. Those powerful words pierced my heart, so I joined in on the next verse—and the next. At one point, there was a log bridge across a now raging mountain stream, and I stopped right in the middle of it and worshiped God with my hands raised in the pouring rain. Through the power of worship, God transformed one of the worst weekends of my life into a worship experience I will never forget. That weary trek down the mountain in the middle of a downpour ended up being a God encounter I desperately needed. It reminded me that my King can transform any dismal situation into victory when I praise Him.

PERSONAL APPLICATION:
Worship isn’t just about singing to God. It’s a mindset. We offer our bodies as living sacrifices (Rom 12:1) and keep our eyes fixed on Him throughout the day. (Heb 12:2) When the torrent does come, we remind ourselves—He is right there. Pray and praise. God is available on muddy trails, in family crises, at the unemployment office, driving in the car—wherever His people are praising Him; He is there in the midst. He inhabits the praises of His people (Psalm 22:3).

PRAYER:
Father,
You are so awesome and worthy of all praise all the time. Help us remember, especially in the storms of life, you are always there. We can praise You in the storm and You will deliver us and guide us safely on the path. Amen

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Doug Smith has been married to his beautiful wife, Cindy, for 19 years and they have a daughter, Colbi. They have gone to Life Assembly for 7 years. Doug’s passion is awakening people to the spiritual battle and who God created them to be.

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