praising God and having favor with all the people. and the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved. [acts 2:47]
in acts 2:42-47, we have walked through so many things that unite us in Christ. we have unified: devotion, reverence, desires, mission, commitment, and now … praise. according to God’s word, all of these are beautiful and powerful manifestations of our unity in Christ. but they don’t just show our unity, they are our unity in Christ! interesting that the last demonstration of unity was praise.
i believe praise is one of the most powerful reactions we have to true unity in Christ. and, i believe praise is one of the most powerful things we can do to nurture and grow true unity in Christ. why do you think we miss gathering so much? yes we miss the body, we miss our friends, we miss those who are running this race with us, but we also miss the beauty and power of praise that comes in the gathering of believers. whether it is with five others or five hundred others, hearing the goodness of God talked about, proclaimed, read in his word, testified to, sung about, or prayed about stirs us and grows our affection for Jesus and his body!
today, your praise and adoration of God can nurture and grow our community. our “common-unity” can actually rise through your praise, our praise! may you and i take the time to praise our Father today: singing his praises, speaking his praises, reading his praises, and sharing his praises with others. take a moment … and let the Spirit fill your heart with praise for our LORD. we often ask, what does waiting on the LORD look like? here is a way to engage this call of the scripture. grab a pen, open the word, and begin to write down everything you can that is praise to our God: who he is, what awes you about him, what he has done, what he is doing, what he will do, and more. turn on worship music, go outside, get in a quiet place, whatever helps. you don’t need an hour. 15 minutes and the Spirit can fill your heart and mind with praise.
use psalm 34. before you read, ask God to fill your heart with praise and then ask for the humility and boldness to share that praise with him and with another. as you read, write down your praise. then, at some point and time today, text, call, or talk to another about your praise of our great and mighty God! as you do, two wonderful things will happen, you will build the unity of Christ’s body and you, yes you will be a blessing to our God!
i will bless the Lord at all times; his praise shall continually be in my mouth. [psalm 34:1]
o LORD, fill our heart and our mouth with your praise. you are almighty, all-powerful, beautiful God. you are worthy of our praise just because of who you are. but, you have also created the heavens and you have re-created our hearts in Christ. you are working in us, through us, and in this world. may our eyes behold your beauty, may our heart taste your presence, and may our soul declare … that you are GOOD!
~ john ryan