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Devotion 4

Daily Diet

Fat grams, saturated fats, cholesterol, sodium, sugar, and calories! Think we hear enough about them? Ever get tired of listening? Believe all you hear? Too many hours at work? Torn between too many activities? Running too many directions with other responsibilities?

In other words, are you on overload? Stretched to the limit? Singing snatches of "Stop the World, I Want to Get Off?" Well, this may sound cruel, but I'd like to add something else to your daily diet: an infusion of praise.

"The Lord's name is to be praised!" Psalm 113:3 says. And not just once in while. The first part of the verse tells me the duration of my praise: "From the rising of the sun until the going down of the same the Lord's name is to be praised."

I can't tell you how important I think praise to the Lord is in my daily life. Without it, I go stale. It's not that I go to pieces or nothing goes right. It's just that I work so much harder than I need to, that I invest more energy than the job requires or deserves because I have neglected the fountain of praise within me.

Think about it. Why bother? Number one, that's what I am told to do over and over in the Bible. Two of my favorite passages are Psalm 103:1-5 and Philippians 4:4-8.

You can probably quote them yourselves.

Number two is that it is good for us. Remember the verse that says "Pray without ceasing"? (I Thessalonians 5:17) I think praise operates on the same principle. It's an attitude. It's a habit. It's a lifestyle. These are twin ingredients of a healthy diet. Both should be as natural to me — and you —as breathing. And when they aren't, we need to take a step back and start unplugging the fountain of praise within us.

Finally — well, not really, but this is a short "Heartbeat" — the third reason for praise is that God isn't just in this praise thing for Himself. I have often reminded students that God says we should praise Him not just because He deserves it but because of what He does for us in response to our praise. In Psalm 103:1-5, David lists what God has done and then He tells us why: "So that thy youth is renewed like the eagle's." In the eagle's case that is a literal, physical fact — Research it.

Why would David use that illustration if we weren't going to reap similar results through our praise to God? I know that I have to stop and dredge up reasons to praise the Lord when I'm existing on an adrenaline rush — That's the miserable truth.

There is a solution: the quoting of the Scripture. But you have to remember that you can't pull something from your heart or mind that you haven't put there.

When I can't think of anything else, I remember Psalm 103:1-5, and I start quoting it. It greases the cranky joints of my spirit. I recommend the addition of this nutrient to your daily diet as a way to renew your appetite for life , for work — and for God!

For Further Consideration:

Psalm 103:1-5

Psalm 113:1-8

Psalm 115

Psalm 117

Psalm 118:1-5, 20

Philippians 4:4-8

©Ann Wharton,

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