Praising the Lord
‘Praise ye the Lord; for it is good to sing praises unto our God’ (Ps. 147:1).
It is a comely and befitting thing for us to blend praise and prayer. There is a difference between praise and thanksgiving. We thank God for what he has done for us; we praise him for what he is in himself. In praise we come nearest to the worship of Heaven, where the angels and the redeemed find the loftiest exercise of their faculties in ascribing praise, and honour, and glory to God. In my private devotions, I find nothing more helpful than to recite the Te Deum before asking for any gift at the hand of God. It seems to put God in his right place, and to bow the soul before him in the attitude of adoration and praise. ‘It is good to sing praises, and praise is comely.’
Let us praise his condescending love (vv. 1-6). He counts the number of the stars as a shepherd tells his sheep. The Psalmist likens the constellations to a flock of sheep, which their shepherd is driving through space. What a sublime conception of suns, planets and asteroids! Yet this wonderful and infinite God can bend over our little lives, and take special notice of the outcasts, the broken- hearted, the sorely wounded and the meek. None are too small and insignificant for his notice. Just as a mother is most careful and thoughtful for the smallest and most ailing child in her family, so God’s tenderest, strongest and most efficient help is displayed towards the neediest and most helpless of his children. He always seeks the lost sheep and the prodigal child.
Let us praise God’s work in providence. Notice the present tenses in this Psalm.The Psalmist felt that God was always working in nature, and that everything was due to the direct action of his Providence. And Jesus confirmed this when he said that no sparrow fell to the ground without the Father’s notice. The pure in heart, the child-like and the meek, have this prerogative of seeing God’s hand in all things. God is; God is everywhere active and energetic; and therefore there is no point of space, and no moment of time, in which he does not operate. ‘Let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to his Name’ (Heb. 13:15).
We beseech thee, give us that due sense of all thy mercies, that our hearts may be unfeign- edly thankful, and that we shew forth thy praise, not only with our lips, but in our lives, by giv- ing up ourselves to thy service, and by walking before thee in holiness and righteousness all our days; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
*Excerpted from Our Daily Walk: Daily Readings by F. B. Meyer (Christian Heritage, 2010).
About F. B. Meyer:
On F. B. Meyer’s death in 1929 The Daily Telegraph called him ‘The Archbishop of the Free Churches’. The New York Observer noted that ‘He has an international fame and his services are constantly sought by churches over the wide and increasing empire of Christendom.’ To the secular press of his time he was a key player on the world scene. Meyer was the minister one of Britain’s first ‘megachurches’. He was friends with D. L. Moody and ministered on both sides of the Atlantic, mirroring in America what D. L. Moody was able to undertake in the U.K. He came from a conventional, middle class Victorian background and experienced no dramatic conversion. He was not a distinguished scholar or dramatic orator. His slight figure and retiring manner meant that he did not stand out in a crowd. Yet he drew crowds by the thousands, wrote books, which sold by the millions, and attracted working class people.The range of Meyer’s activities is astonishing: preacher, pastor, writer, social activist, free church leader, Baptist president, advocate for missionary work and more. In his last years, he declared, ‘If I had a hundred lives, they should be at Christ’s disposal.’ At times, it seemed as though he was living a hundred lives!
Where to Buy:
Our Daily Walk: Daily Readings by F. B. Meyer is available at any good Christian bookstore. If you don’t have a Christian bookstore near you, you may want to consider purchasing a copy from one of the online book retailers listed below: