Who in the world can still Praise God when they've been hit by a Tsunami, semi-truck or been betrayed by a close friend? Are you in the middle of a divorce, bankruptcy, a recent bad report from the doctor, or you just found out that your kid is on cocaine? In the natural, it’s impossible and mind boggling to “Praise the Lord” when Hell is knocking at your door.
Paul and Silas had just been arrested, beaten with rods and placed far inside the inner prison. But at midnight, Paul looks over at Silas and says, “Let’s pray and sing praises unto our God.” (Acts 16:25) Silas could have looked at Paul cross-eyed but instead took to heart his words and began to pray and sing unto the Lord.
Is it really possible to PRAISE God in such a time of difficulty?
· FOCUS. Each of us must constantly correct our attention upon our Lord if we are to stay on the trajectory of PRAISE to God. Paul and Silas were busy doing the Lord’s work when Hell came at them with a vengeance. Your flesh may feel like crawling up in your bed with the blinds shut and sinking deeper into your darkness and despair. They placed Paul and Silas in the deepest darkest part of the prison, yet Paul decided to still Praise His God.
· FAITH. Paul declares, “I have kept the faith.” (2 Timothy 4:7) A tree can look pretty on the outside with its bark, but the inside of the tree tells the real story. Recently a huge tree fell in my front yard during a strong storm. When it fell I came to realize that the inner core of the tree was rotting away. It’s only when your inner man is full of faith that you will stand in the tough places. Paul’s praise was a sign of the inner rich faith in his heart. You will either choose faith or fear, courage or cowardice, tenacity or timidness.
· FIGHT. Paul said, “I have fought a good fight.” (2 Timothy 4:7) Fighting without any armor is out right dangerous! God provides us the belt of truth, the breastplate of righteousness, shoes of peace, the shield of faith, the helmet of salvation, the sword of the Spirit, and the ability to pray in the Spirit. Why would you want to fight in your own might and power? You will lose every time without Gods armor on you.
The devil will attempt to knock the wind out of you because he doesn't want to hear any praise to God out of your mouth. When Paul and Silas chose to PRAISE HIM, God shook the prison doors with an earthquake and the chains fell off as they were delivered from prison. Do you have focus, faith and some fight in you? Keep it up, and victory will come your way.