“ I will bless the Lord at all times. His praise shall continually be in my mouth.” Psalms 34:1 NKJV
It is human nature to rejoice and celebrate when good things happen but cry and complain when we are faced with difficult situations. We acquire this behaviour from a young age and tend to carry these same reactions into our life and relationship with God.
In good times, we rejoice, and in bad times, we sulk. However, as believers, our commandment is to praise God at all times, even in bad times, just as our anchor scripture states.
We could learn a lesson from Paul and Silas. They praised God even in jail (Acts 16). Note that they had no idea God would send angels to release them. They only kept praising God because they knew to thank Him in all circumstances.
To praise God in bad times, we should be grateful for all He has done and will do. As believers, a thankful heart should be our disposition always (1 Thessalonians 5:18). We look beyond our challenges and praise God with the understanding that praising God isn’t just a reflection of our circumstances but the perpetual state of a believer.
Praising God shows our faith in Him. When we praise God in bad times, we express our trust in Him as a good Father who is in control, even when we don’t understand what is happening. Abraham is an example of someone who stood on God’s promises and praised Him in faith. Abraham learned to praise God for His promises rather than focus on the struggles and hard times (Romans 4: 20).
We also praise God in bad times because He is good. Praising God in the hard times may not lessen the pain we feel but it redirects our focus to who God is. He is a never changing Father who has fulfilled His promise to neither leave nor abandon us (Psalms 34: 18). In Psalm 42, David chose to praise God regardless of his worries or circumstance. That should be our story too.
Praising God in difficult times reminds us of His love for us, which brings comfort and hope during our pain. It can also help us focus on the positive aspects of our situation, even when things are tough.
Ultimately, God, through His Spirit, heals the distressed soul. Why not fix your focus on God and let Him take you through that circumstance? The Bible tells us that God is enthroned on the praises of His people (Psalms 22:3). Therefore, when we praise Him, we enthrone Him above every circumstance plaguing us.
Dear believer, don’t despair in bad times. Praise God instead.
Bible Reading Plan: Psalms 84-85, 87