On Christmas of 2009, my dad gifted me with the Chronological Study Bible. It arranges the books and chapters of the Bible in order of when the events actually happened. It’s a timeline that includes notes and articles and graphics that make you feel as though you are experiencing history. It has become my favorite way to read through the Bible year after year.
This past June, as I was reading through the gospels, I froze on Matthew 6, Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount. I’ve read this chapter many times and have most of it committed to memory. But, as we approach a new school year amidst a pandemic, my fear and worry and anxiety root deeper and deeper within me. Matthew 6:25-34 addresses worry in red words, which means it is Jesus Himself speaking (so we should listen!). As I was reading them – I experienced a spiritual slap in the face.
This passage tells us that God cares for the birds, and the flowers, and the grass. That he feeds them and clothes them. But Jesus doesn’t stop there! He continues and says that we, God’s children, are more valuable than any other living thing. We are seen, heard, loved, and cared for by the Creator Himself – and worry does nothing except steal our joy and fill us with hopelessness.
So, what is the antidote for fear and worry and anxiety? Praise! When we shift our perspective from inward apprehensions to outward adoration – our fear turns to power, our worry to love, and our anxiety to self-discipline (2 Timothy 1:7). This is exactly what King David is demonstrating in Psalm 150. This is the final chapter in the book of Psalms, a doxology. Think, for a moment, of all that David had endured. He experienced incredible hardships (some of them self inflicted) but David chose to praise God instead of turning his back on God.
So, dear friend, as summer winds down and another school year begins – will you join me in choosing to praise over choosing to worry?
Thrive in Five – One set of Bible verses, 5 minutes a day, 5 days a week. Grab a journal or download this worksheet and let’s dive into God’s Word.
Praise the LORD. Praise God is his sanctuary; praise him in his mighty heavens. Praise him for his acts of power; praise him for his surpassing greatness. Praise him with the sounding of the trumpet, praise him with the harp and lyre, praise him with the timbrel and dancing, praise him with the strings and pipe, praise him with the clash of cymbals, praise him with resounding cymbals. Let everything that has breath praise the LORD. Praise the LORD. – Psalm 150 NIV
Monday: Read Psalm 150. Write this passage in a journal and read the words out loud – slowly and intentionally while thinking about what each one means.
Tuesday: Read Psalm 150 and answer these questions: What does this passage say about God? Is there an action to follow?
Wednesday: Read Psalm 150 and think about this question: Is there a command to obey or an example to follow in this passage?
Thursday: Read Psalm 150 and begin to think about how you can apply this verse to your own life by answering this question: Does this passage give a promise to believe or a principle to practice?
Friday: Read Psalm 150 and respond to this question: Does this passage warn of sin(s) to avoid or give a warning to heed?
We look forward to hearing how God uses (insert bible passage here) to transform your heart and renew your mind as you lean into His perfect and pleasing will for your life. (Romans 12:2)
Love fiercely and live deeply, Bare Feet & Curls