I could have said “resurrected” but that is much too important a word spiritually, but it is sort of. Let me explain. I was dead for a while, having undergone vital losses at once, of course the most valuable being my daddy, and I was in a bit of a spiritual slump as well. Caretaking and watching the decline of the most important person throughout my whole life plus the whole rest of life is a challenge for even the most energetic and driven of us. There are human limitations on this superwoman after all. Lol And I withdrew from society after the Memorial services were over and I don’t remember most of it all. I left Facebook, Instagram, contacted as few people as possible, left a text me if you need me sign and hunkered down at home with my little family, going out when needed or when the kids needed and living quietly and cried a whole heck of a lot more than during my entire life before that. And meanwhile, God was drawing me to Himself and to my family and especially to my good husband who I had neglected during it all, poor love. And I can say that I am emerging from my cacoon a different but still recognizable person and in a few healthy months my superwoman cape should fit again and I will obey God with all my heart and take amazing care of my husband and family, practice more, write another book, record more original songs (my hubby bought me a new keyboard for such a thing), paint more, gig well and more and have fun in life. And most importantly, God is my number one priority as He is of far greater importance in life than anything else. He revived me and I give credit solely to Him in healing me and reviving me to life again. I had nothing left and He never left me alone and loved me back to life. What a mighty God we serve!!!
Among us Earthlings, we have really good people who love their maker God. We also have these selfish souls who have decided they are their own best gods and must have made themselves and made everyone else to exist for their benefit. These people are called narcissists. Narcissists take and never give, much like entitled parasites. They demand but never give. They insist upon their way, their praises, our worship and give back only more demands and enough of whatever we desire to get their way and hot one drop more. They shapeshift to keep from being found out, they lie and coerce and manipulate and require praise and worship in return. They appear perfect and make every effort to be charming and delightful and put up such a great front that everyone insists this is an amazing person. The perception of them changes as soon as they reveal their true colors and cold heart and have drained their forced worshipers of their life and energy and moved on to greener pastures, better, younger, higher energy, undamaged, strong so they can eat well and feed their egos anew. And until these people humble themselves before God and acknowledge Him as the One who should be worshipped (until they are forced to their knees on judgment day and it is too late), they will only be as temporarily happy ad their next conquest and will never know truth and God’s peace and lasting joy. They will continue to terrorize and bully and play these immature games until they draw their last breath. Narcissists need to change. For their sake and the sake of all of society. Our beautiful world is more and more polluted by these creatures and good people are unapologetically hurt every day. If change is not executed and true change only Jesus can bring, these folks will be required to continue being their own God into eternity and be separated from the real powerful God of the universe. And I don’t wish that on anyone.
“Come into his city with songs of thanksgiving and into his courtyards with songs of praise. Thank him and praise his name. The Lord is good. His love is forever, and his loyalty goes on and on.” – Psalm 100:4 – 5
“I mean that you have been saved by grace through believing. You did not save yourselves; it was a gift from God. It was not the result of your own efforts, so you cannot brag about it.” – Ephesians 2:8 – 9
Praise is a fantastic discovery. It is powerful. It can be directed to people when they are caught doing something good. It can be directed to God because He is always good. It can be directed to plants you want to grow better and healthier. It is amazing. The power is in the positive push of desirable sound waves entering the eardrum or cells of another individual. When these words enter the brain or cells of the receiver, they are accepted as positive validation and verification which releases chemicals that are beneficial to the receiver. These chemicals make the receiver feel good as well as aid to the overall health of that receiver. There is power for the person giving the gift of praise. That person temporarily at least has chosen to do a good thing. This humbles the person and says that someone else deserves attention rather than myself for that moment. The power is the knowledge and good feeling that comes from helping someone or giving them a valuable gift. It is a free gift except for the energy it takes and brief humility to produce the words. So, for very little cost, here is a mutually beneficial gift of praise. The act of seeing the good in someone and sharing that with them is praise. Praise is never wasted. Our words have immense power and our positive words have immense we positive power for the giver and receiver. So do not neglect to praise. You can praise God for just being Who He is. You can praise people who do good things. When you do, you and they will be blessed. Every. Time.
Sometimes the worship forest is not seen through the praise trees. Seems a weird concept, but stay with me. We praise God. Yay! We should. He is so worthy! He is incredible, so much we can not even fathom it. However, we often can miss the fullness of a lifestyle of worship to God by thinking all that is involved is bunches of praise. It is far more than that. Why? How can this be? Praising God is one aspect of putting Him first in life and walking worthy of His generous gifts and blessings to us- from life itself to an amazing view of nature to someone smiling or holding the door for us. Living worthy of that goes well beyond praising the Praiseworthy One but also obeying Him. Ouch. Really? Yep. We have to not just stay high on the mountain of praise and meander down to the valleys to serve the unserved and love the unloved to show them what they do not see of our Savior through their own misfortunes. Worship involves all that as well as the praise. The forest of worship is a higher calling than tending the trees of praise. Yes, the trees are vital but not everything. We must take what we know of God and our Savior Jesus Christ to a world that needs to see that truth through their own distractions. We must be God to them. That is worship and I aspire to a lift of worship and not just of praise. If we all adopted that desire and acted on it, the world would be changed yet again.