What or who inspires and motivates you to praise and worship your Lord? His Word, prayer, creation, church, music, answered prayer, your spouse, children, or grandchildren, close friends or prayer partners, the list could be endless.
Whatever the motivation—in the good seasons or the bad—our lives should continually be filled with thanksgiving, praise, and adoration of the King of kings and Lord of lords!
For nine months, we’ve been in a crazy season of life. So many things have changed or been rearranged. One of those is my visits to the fitness center, just around the corner from our condo. Time on the elliptical machine has been replaced with long walks in my neighborhood or extended treks on the local greenway as the safer options. Although maintaining an exercise routine was the initial motivation for my morning and evening walks, I’ve discovered new incentives that far surpass fireworks flashing across the screen of my Fitbit, signaling my 10,000-step goal has been met.
Encounters with my heavenly Father have become so cherished, as we commune together in prayer and worship, that even frost-covered lawns and freezing temperatures can’t discourage me from meeting with Him. Some mornings, the Holy Spirit seems to burst forth from my inner being like a powerful force that has been confined behind closed doors all night while I slept. The words to the old hymn, “He walks with me and He talks with me,” have taken on new meaning. Like the words in Mary’s “Magnificat” that Luke recorded in the first chapter of his gospel narrative: “My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior” (Luke 1:46–47).
Weekly prayer calls with covenant friends also have become priceless treasures. Praise and worship flow freely, intermingled with serious requests and rich nuggets from the Word. Yes, we miss our in-person meetings and face-to-face sharing times, but being able to sip a hot cup of coffee while sitting in our recliner with our pajamas on during those early morning hours is kind of nice. Still, we miss the gentle hugs when our hearts have been broken by disappointment or our minds bombarded with fears. Without doubt, having close sisters in Christ with whom we can share our burdens and rejoice over our victories is an invaluable gift in any setting.
Although Mary had a visitation from Gabriel and an overshadowing by the Holy Spirit that resulted in the conception of the Messiah, not until she heard Elizabeth’s encouragement and prophetic declaration did Mary finally begin to rejoice and sing her “Magnificat.” Her song of praise has resonated throughout all generations!
We need one another! We have multiple opportunities to encourage and celebrate with each other! Mutual celebrations and shared pain are scriptural principles. Paul told the Romans, “Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep” (12:15). My thanksgiving inspires your “thank you.” My worship motivates you to sing a little louder and praise a bit longer. My tears may cause yours to flow, but the joy that comes in the morning will also be contagious.
Let’s inspire a “Magnificat” in someone today!