When you meet together, sing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, as you praise the Lord with all your heart. — Ephesians 5:19
Worship is a festival, not a funeral!
If anybody on earth has the right to celebrate, it is those of us who have committed our lives to Christ and been accepted into God’s family! Just think of all God has done for us!
As we trust in Jesus Christ we are:
- given a new life of purpose and significance!
- forgiven for every sin, mistake, and failure!
- loved unconditionally and accepted by God!
- provided with a spiritual family for our support!
- set free from worry because God is in control!
- offered God’s power to overcome hurts, habits, and hang-ups!
- given God’s Word with the principles for successful living!
- released from shame, regret, and resentment!
- assured that Satan cannot take away our salvation!
- comforted knowing that “God works all things together for our good”!
- able to face each day with hope and optimistic faith!
- equipped with spiritual gifts, talents, and abilities to use!
- protected by all of God’s promises!
- supplied with everything we need!
- guaranteed eternal life in heaven!
If all these benefits don’t cause you to celebrate, you need to check your pulse!
It’s ironic that in our culture it is acceptable to get excited about anything except God.
You can go to a sports event and scream your lungs out, jump up and down, cry, hug, and raise your hands in the air — and people will smile approvingly and call you a “fan.” But if you show any joy, heartfelt emotion, or enthusiasm in worship, you’re called a “fanatic.”
Second Samuel 6:5 tells us that “David and the whole house of Israel were celebrating with all their might before the Lord, with songs and with harps, lyres, tambourines, sistrums and cymbals.” That must have been fun and noisy! But David’s wife, Michal, was more concerned about being dignified than celebrating, and she scolded her husband for his enthusiastic worship (2 Samuel 6:16–20). Sadly, the attitude of Michal still hinders many churches today from enjoying worship and fellowship as a community of believers.
God loves to hear His children sing His praises.
Psalm 150:6 says, “Let everything that has breath praise the Lord.”
Psalm 149:1 tells us the kind of song to sing: “Sing to God a brand-new song, praise Him in the company of all who love Him.” Why a new song? Because God wants to do something fresh in our lives.
The Bible is full of celebrations — feasts and festivals and holidays — because they are important ways to mark progress in our lives. There is great power in remembering. But too often we are so busy moving on to the next activity or task that we don’t stop and celebrate what has been accomplished.
Revelation 5:11–13 tells us that heaven is going to be a giant celebration! Let’s start practicing our celebration skills now, so our hearts will be ready for heaven! The time we spend singing His praises here on earth will just whet our appetites for the day when the song will never end.
POINT TO PONDER: Every time I celebrate God with others, I’m practicing for Heaven.
VERSE TO REMEMBER: I will celebrate and be joyful because You, Lord, have saved me. — Psalm 35:9
Excerpted with permission from 40 Days of Community Devotional: What on Earth are We Here For? by Rick Warren, copyright Zondervan.
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What good things have you seen God do during the past six weeks in your life, in your family, in your small group, and in your church family? Then spend some time thanking Him specifically for each thing. Come, join the conversation and share some of your thanksgivings with us on our blog! We would love to hear from you! ~ Devotionals Daily