Thanksgiving, Praise and Worship

Enter with the password: “Thank you!”
    Make yourselves at home, talking praise.
    Thank him. Worship him.”  (Psalm 100:4 MSG)

Yes, His Word says, “Enter His gates with thanksgiving and into His courts with praise.”  But have you ever asked yourself why?  Why do our church gatherings start with thanksgiving, praise and worship?  Do we do this in our private time of prayer?

Surely we will find many general reasons of the same, but we may also find various and unique answers, for He reveals them to us personally that is well suited to who He created us to be, or what best fits us at that very given moment.

We enter His gates with thanksgiving and into His courts with praise fully persuaded that the Lord our God is good all the time.  There may be times when we start thanking Him for the good things that He has done for us, but we do not stop there.  By faith, we thank Him for what He is doing at present and what He is about to do in the future, with confidence in our hearts that only good and perfect gift come from the Father of lights in which with Him there is no variation or shifting shadows.  What He says is what He will do.  The Lord our God does not lie nor changes His mind.  When He says it, He will do it and He will do it good, exceedingly beyond our expectations.  When He says He knows His plans for us, plans to prosper us and never to harm us to give us a hope and a future, we believe Him, thus, such promise becomes a platform for us to thank and praise Him.  

I like the Message Paraphrase of this verse in Jeremiah 29:11 that says, I’ll show up and take care of you as I promised and bring you back home. I know what I’m doing. I have it all planned out—plans to take care of you, not abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for.”

With this one promise believed and received by faith, our hearts get fueled to lift up our hands and raise our voices to praise the One Who is worthy.  How much more if we dig into the thousands of hidden treasures in His written promises? What do you think will become of us? “Thankers”, “praisers” and “worshippers” night and day, day and night!

Every single day is a learning opportunity.  Every single day is a given privilege to seek our daily bread.  Every single day we long to hear what He speaks for His Word says man shall not live by bread alone but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.  And this daily provision will last us for the day, like manna that the Lord provided in the olden times.  But, it is also deposited in the reservoir of our hearts that the Holy Spirit can bring out from deep within, breathe into it, that it becomes a perfect answer for that designated time.  We need to keep in mind that His Word is both timely and timeless.

“Then the Lord said to Moses, “Behold, I will rain bread from heaven for you. And the people shall go out and gather a certain quota every day, that I may test them, whether they will walk in My law or not.” (Exodus 16:4)

It is so interesting to think that the word “Manna” in Hebrew means “What is it?”.   Could it be that the Lord is telling us, that “What is it?” that we need each day, He is there to provide through the power of His Word?  I believe so.

“Then the children of Israel did so and gathered, some more, some less. So when they measured it by omers, he who gathered much had nothing left over, and he who gathered little had no lack. Every man had gathered according to each one’s need.”  (Exodus 16:17-18)

It says, some gathered much yet there was no left over and the one who gathered less had enough.  Every single day He has and supplies us what we need.  No wonder Jesus said, Refuse to worry about tomorrow, but deal with each challenge that comes your way, one day at a time.  Tomorrow will take care of itself.” (Matthew 6:34 TPT)

Matthew 6:11 says, “Give us this day our daily bread.”  In the The Passion Translation, it says, “We acknowledge you as our Provider of all we need each day.”

In the past, I used to think that we always strive to be the best that we can to be able to come into His presence and be accepted when we start to pray.  I thought singing the best song rendered in our very best way, saying the best words that we can ever think of and putting our hearts as pure as we can, can earn us to get past the gate to get into His throne.  Because this was my revelation before, as I thought it was, I also did.  But more often than not, I got disappointed.  Many times I did not get the best song and sang it the best way.  I did not have the best words nor had a pure heart every time. 

One beautiful day, as I was meditating on this verse and seeking His voice to speak to me what this really means … “Enter His gates with thanksgiving and into His courts with praise.” (Psalm 100:4), a new revelation came and the eyes of my understanding was being enlightened.  When He breathes a new and fresh revelation, it shapes us into our new “from glory-to-glory identity” and shifts our thought patterns that open us to our new level of reality.

The Holy Spirit is always up to answer our inquiry when we ask.  At times we have not because we ask not.  We have been given this honor and privilege to ASK and it shall be given, SEEK and we shall find, KNOCK and it shall be opened.  He is not intimated when we ask whatever it is that we need.  On the contrary, He is delighted when we come to Him and ask.  It is a posture of humility in which He gives grace to.  He said, when we lack wisdom, we ask and He will liberally give it without reproach.  Asking Him and Him answering is always a step forward to enhancing our intimate relationship with Him.  In the same way, our response to what He is saying deepens and strengthens our connection with Him.  When we abide in Him and His Word abide in us, we shall ask what we desire and it shall be given, with which our Heavenly Father is glorified when we bear much fruit.

“If you live in life-union with me and if my words live powerfully within you—then you can ask  whatever you desire and it will be done. When your lives bear abundant fruit, you demonstrate that you are my mature disciples who glorify my Father!” (John 15:7-8 TPT)

So, when I asked Him, this was what was revealed to me that splintered and pulverized my previous religious thought and deed.  He simply yet powerfully impressed this in my heart … “You enter into My gate with thanksgiving and into My courts with praise by thanking Me for sending you My only Begotten and Beloved Son, Jesus Christ, because of My great love for you.  Jesus paid the steep price by His suffering, death and resurrection for you.  He cleansed you from all your unrighteousness, made you pure and blameless.  It is not by your own works that you get purified.  He paid for your purity, sanctity and heavenly identity by the power of His blood that you can now come boldly into My throne of grace that you may receive My mercy’s kiss and discover the grace you urgently need to strengthenyou in your time of weakness.  He clothed you with robe of righteousness that you securely and eternally have right standing before Me, ever welcomed with My arms wide open anytime, any day and anywhere you desire to come and enter in.  When Jesus cried out, “It is finished!”, and at once the veil of the Holy of Holies of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom, the earth shook and the rocks were split apart, I opened the way for you.  Nothing and no one can ever shut that gateway into My presence and shut you out from My throne again because you believed and received Jesus Christ, My Son, Whom I sent.  And not only that you can come to Me anytime, I chose you to become My house of prayer, the temple of My Spirit, My holy habitation, My home where I can live My life in and through you by the power and presence of My Spirit, the Holy Spirit.  He is Breath.  He is Life.  He is Person.  He is Power.  He is the Spirit of Truth Who gives revelation, the Spirit Who takes the words of Jesus and makes them life to you in your moment of need”

What do you think my response was to this? My heart melted and I bowed down in worship.  My words and my songs of thanksgiving and praise freely flowed like a river.  The “law of my best” that made me captive in my mind became non-existent and was replaced with intimacy that only by faith in my heart could grasp yet became my tangible reality, that the Best that Heaven has, the Darling of Heaven, Jesus Christ, came to set me free and chose to dwell in me.

You and I have been saved by grace through faith. It is truly and fully unmerited, unearned and undeserved. All glory to God!

“For it’s by God’s grace that you have been saved. You receive it through faith. It was not our plan or our effort. It is God’s gift, pure and simple. You didn’t earn it, not one of us did, so don’t go around bragging that you must have done something amazing.” (Ephesians 2:8 VOICE)

One whisper of His still small voice can bring a pivotal change within us.  One touch of His Presence can surely make all things new with the way we live and approach life.  When are changed from inside-out, we can bring change to the sphere of influence that He called us to, as we share our walk with Him.  We become witnesses, proof-providers, evidence-carriers that Jesus is alive and He is living on the inside of us by the presence and power of the Holy Spirit until the whole earth is filled with the KNOWLEDGE of His glory as the waters cover the sea.

The day after what He revealed to me, I heard Rick Pino shared this …

He is not enthroned on our preaching.  He is not enthroned on our evangelism.  He is not enthroned when we pray for the sick.  All that stuff is awesome.  But He is enthroned in our praises.   That means that God is so radically in love with you that He said, ‘I want to put the governmental center of the universe in the midst of imperfect people’s imperfect songs and imperfect lives because I would rather be close enough to them than anywhere else in the universe.”  As wonderful as preaching and evangelism are, worship is the governing throne from which God has chosen to rule from. 

Evangelism in its purest form is an act of worship.

“But You are holy, O You who are enthroned in [the holy place where] the praises of Israel [are offered].”  (Psalm 22:3 AMP)

Why do you think Jesus said, “Do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rather rejoice because your names are written in heaven”, when the seventy returned with joy, saying, “Lord, even the demons are subject to us in Your name.”?  (Luke 10:17; 20)  It must be that it is more a delight to Him when we are His, when we know that we belong to Him, than us having authority over serpents and scorpions and over all the power of the enemy that nothing shall by any means hurt us.  This is all because when He is Lord of our entire lives, His Lordship will manifest through us where everything else that is not of Him must bow down.  It is our identity in Christ that bears witness with our authority over everything else.

Indeed, we live because He speaks and His Word is spirit and life.  Let us continually, constantly and consistently desire to draw near to Him for He is a Rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.

“Bread alone will not satisfy,
    but true life is found in every word
    that constantly goes forth from God’s mouth.” (Matthew 4:4 TPT)

Prayer:  Heavenly Father, thank You, for never withholding anything from us, not even Your only Begotten and Beloved Son, Jesus Christ, because of Your great love for us.  Thank You, Jesus, for Being the Answer to our every need.  You are the “I AM” that whatever we need, “YOU ARE”.  Thank You that You came that we may have life and have it more abundantly.  Thank You that You saved us and set us free.

“Christ arrives right on time to make this happen. He didn’t, and doesn’t, wait for us to get ready. He presented himself for this sacrificial death when we were far too weak and rebellious to do anything to get ourselves ready. And even if we hadn’t been so weak, we wouldn’t have known what to do anyway. We can understand someone dying for a person worth dying for, and we can understand how someone good and noble could inspire us to selfless sacrifice. But God put his love on the line for us by offering his Son in sacrificial death while we were of no use whatever to him.”  (Romans 5:8)

Thank You, Holy Spirit, for being our Truth-Revealer, for continuously guiding and teaching us so closely for You dwell with us and in us, never leaving us nor forsaking us.  Thank You for always unveiling the King of kings and Lord of lords, Jesus Christ, before our eyes and assuring us of His presence at all times.  Never again will we ever be orphaned. Never again will we ever be alone, for Your presence is always with us, giving us rest, giving us success and seeing our journey to the end.  Amen!

Photo Credits: Baibee Guerrero

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s