That We May Declare His Praises

by Joy Press, Assistant Principal

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“How many of you know God’s purpose for you?” I remember my teacher, Mr. Kirch, asking this question in our high school class. Only a few brave students raised their hands.  After all, how could we as seniors in high school be sure that we knew God’s purpose for us?  Mr. Kirch continued the lesson by assuring us that we should, indeed, already know without a doubt God’ purpose for us, even at a young age. Some of those brave hands went back down.  He was right!  We could already have an answer, and you can too!

 

The Bible makes it clear that we are to glorify God. In Isaiah 43 God says that He created us for His glory. In 1 Corinthians we are told that whatever we do, it should all be done for the glory of God. This instruction is echoed in several other places such as in 1 Peter 4. You can surmise that regardless of our occupation, our talents, our skills, interests or pursuits we share one common purpose — to glorify God.

 

The answer to the question “HOW do we glorify God?” is a bit longer. We glorify God by acknowledging who He is and praising and worshiping Him.  We glorify God by living in relationship with Him and by serving Him faithfully. It should be noted that we cannot do any of this apart from God. On our own we are fallen, sinful creatures. It is only when we are saved by Christ that we enter into  right relationship with God and can bring Him glory.

 

This truth is echoed in this year’s theme verse, 1 Peter 2:9, “But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His wonderful light” (NIV).  We are not “True Royalty”  for our sake or for our benefit. God has made us “True Royalty”  so that we can declare His praises and bring Him glory.

 

When I think of a royal declaration or proclamation, I think of the town criers and heralds featured in Disney films. These characters typically announce the arrival of the king while touting his greatness. Or, perhaps they bring forth news of the king’s decrees.  We have a similar role to play. We are to declare, announce, and set forth the praises of God. To praise someone is to express approval, to applaud, and to recount the good things s/he has done. To praise God is to call attention to His glory.  This is our purpose and our job, and it is not only a duty but a delight.

 

First, we can praise God privately—this is right and good. We come to God with thanksgiving, declaring the praises of who He is and what He has done. However, the nature of praise implies public expression. To declare His praises we share His nature and His deeds with others. Like the town crier, we announce His goodness to the world, for God is truly worthy of our praise.

 

Do not be a town “cry-er” who simply bemoans the state of affairs. Rather, be the King’s town crier who glorifies God by declaring His praises each and every day!