"Praise the Lord, my soul, and forget not ALL his benefits--who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion, who satisfies your desires with good things..." (Psalm 103:2-5).
The life of faith is a collision of absolutes in opposition to questions that cannot be answered. Trust, in itself, implies that though I don’t understand, I am pushing the limits for greater breakthrough. There is a place in my heart that must choose to believe God is good in spite of what I see, what I feel, what I want. That place is worship. I never understood that before. I never understood that I bring a sacrifice of praise and worship, not because God has delivered breakthrough, but because He is good. That’s it. It’s that simple.
I know that in the past I have been guilty of believing that God orchestrated evil circumstances–sickness, destruction, loss–to bring me closer to Him. But I was wrong. His grace and mercy does that. That fact is, God is good–all the time. What God ALLOWS and what he ORCHESTRATES are 2 different things. I can no longer attribute evil to God. When I do that, I empower the very one who is out to destroy me. God is not out to destroy me. He is out to complete and perfect me. When evil is present or destruction invades my life, He is not the source. Satan is.
Jesus, as the exact manifestation of His Father, came to earth to destroy the works of the devil. Why would Jesus heal the sick, cast out demons, touch the leper, forgive sins with only a word? Because he was manifesting a greater glory than what had been known prior. He was demonstrating that mercy triumphs over judgement, that the unclean is made clean, that love covers a multitude of sins. The vengeful God of the Old Testament has now become the God of grace in this New Covenant. What an incredible concept.
Because of this, I must embrace a new way of thinking about worship. Worship navigates my heart to embrace what I know to be true. God is good. He is able. He is Holy. He is beautiful. He is perfect in all His ways. And so, when I am on the mountaintops, I worship. When I am joyful, I worship. When I am faint, I worship. When my heart is breaking, I worship. When the answers don’t come, I worship. It’s scary to think of embracing this concept. And yet it liberates, because it confirms that I know God is all He says he is. And that He conquered evil a long time ago.
And as I embrace it, I declare that God FORGIVES. That He is the HEALER. That He is the REDEEMER. And that He is the GIVER of good things. And in my praise, I declare ALL His benefits. Even when I don’t understand all my circumstances.