8 Give praise to the Lord, proclaim his name;
make known among the nations what he has done.
9 Sing to him, sing praise to him;
tell of all his wonderful acts.
10 Glory in his holy name;
let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice.
11 Look to the Lord and his strength;
seek his face always.
1 Chronicles 16:8-11
One of the most precious gifts a mother can give her child is the ability to praise. In a world where everyone looks for the negative and finds offense, the child who learns to praise has the added blessing of seeing things from a more positive perspective. Some may call it a Pollyanna outlook. (Did I just date myself with that metaphor? If I did, you’ll need to watch the 1960 movie on a streaming service.) Regardless of the label negative people put on those who choose praise, even doctors agree, people who have a positive outlook tend to be healthier and heal faster.
We lived in the country when my oldest was tiny. I loved to take walks with her and point out flowers and trees. If I knew the name of the fauna and flora, I’d share it. Plus, I made sure she knew God had created these things for our enjoyment and comfort. Sharing the Creator’s handiwork costs nothing. I’ve enjoyed sitting with my children in the backyard waiting for a lunar eclipse, and my grandson and I once spent an evening under the stars at an astronomy park just enjoying God’s display.
By helping my children and grandchildren understand the wonderful acts of God, I hope I’ve helped them develop hearts that seek God. I know David told his musicians that the hearts of those seek God should rejoice, but I’ve discovered when we chase after the Almighty and praise Him for His beautiful creation, our hearts become full of joy. A praising soul becomes a joyful soul.
Living the faith makes life’s journey better because consulting our maker before we make decisions allows us to avoid some of the hardships; however, Christianity doesn’t remove every trial. When we show our children how to seek God and give Him praise, they can handle the hard times better. The knowledge that Someone bigger has everything under control gives us strength. And the healthy perspective grows through praise.
A life of praise, like a relationship with Jesus, can’t be taught. It must be caught. We can’t tell our children to praise and then constantly speak words of negativity. When we live like King David, a life of praise, songs, and proclaiming the magnitude and glory of God every chance we get, our children will learn it. They will want to imitate it. And by simply living our best life for Christ, we’ll set our children on the path to a life full of salvation, joy, and many blessings—all because we lived a life of praise.
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