Psalm 150 serves as our doxology this week as it affirms myriad ways to praise our Creator. Everything that breathes offers praise to God.
There are extravagant acts of praise: dance, symphonies, orchestras, rock bands, art, hikes, space travel, and oceanography. And there are simple acts of praise. One day, Dash, my then four-year-old grandson, and I visited a bookstore. It is one of our favorite activities. After spending time in the store and making our purchase, we sat on the cement steps outside the store basking in the sun. Dash is a reflective and deep thinker. After a little bit he said, “Do you want to do something good for the earth?” I was curious about what he was thinking. “Of course,” I replied. He said, “We could pick up all this trash.” And so we did. Picking up trash was our act of praise that day. It was our small way of giving praise for creation by honoring it.
We can help everything that breathes praise God by revering all things that God has made and has done. Through dance, music, picking up trash, cleaning up rivers, saving timberlands, caring for children, protecting cultures, respecting older people, and nurturing the human family, we give praise to God.
Let everything that has breath praise God.
After the resurrection of Jesus, the disciples are unable to remain silent. They go to the Temple to proclaim the gospel. Some receive the message, while others do not. This causes turmoil within the community, but the apostles stand firm in their testimony, inspired by the Holy Spirit. Psalm 150 might be on the lips of those early apostles. Everything that has breath should praise the Lord! The author of Revelation recounts a vision that he receives from the risen Jesus Christ, who one day will return as Lord of all nations. In John we learn more about the source of the confidence of the apostles. They have experienced Jesus in the flesh, and this experience gives power to their proclamation of the reality of his resurrection.
Read Acts 5:27-32. When has your faith compelled you to rise up, stand up, or kneel down in obedience to God rather than earthly authorities?
Read Psalm 150. When have you praised God with great noise? When have you praised God with quiet service to creation?
Read Revelation 1:4-8. How do you see peace arising out of violence in the Bible and in the world around you?
Read John 20:19-31. How have your experiences of witnessing violence or the results of violence helped you to understand that violence does not have the last word?
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