– Positioning Yourself for God’s Provision part 3
“This is how I fight my battles!” He quoted these song lyrics to me as we sat in a cold, sterile hospital room. His family had endured a barrage of personal and spiritual attacks. We sat there discussing whether or not he was planning on attending the weekend services at our church that next weekend. “I have to,” He said. “This is how I fight my battles.”
This godly young man has learned that one of our greatest weapons against the attacks of the evil one is to offer praise and worship to God in the midst of our storm!
Does that sound strange to you? Perhaps, but it is profound truth seen throughout the ages in the lives of those who have trusted God and seen Him work miraculously in their lives. Even Jesus gave glory to His Father in His darkest hours of betrayal and crucifixion.
Where have you heard reference to these words?
“My God, my God, why have you abandoned me? Why are you so far from my deliverance and from my words of groaning?” ~ Psalm 22:1
Written as a psalm of David, the ancient King of Israel nearly 3000 years ago, you may also notice that they are the words Jesus quoted while upon the cross. Then, almost immediately following his lament of loneliness and despair, these words are stated in the Psalm and have profound importance.
“But you are holy, enthroned on the praises of Israel.” ~Psalm 22:3
Don’t miss the depth of that statement. Let’s consider a couple of important truths.
1. Who is God when we are struggling, under pressure or feeling alone? Answer: He is still Holy!
2. Where is God when we are struggling, under pressure or feeling alone? Answer: He is present and enthroned on the praises of His people!
On the battlefield of the soul, the secret to living victoriously is to invite the presence of God with our praises. This is the lesson Hannah learned. After years of feeling unworthy and suffering ridicule by her rival Peninnah, Hannah positioned herself before the LORD. She pursued God and trusted His divine plan. She longed for God to grant her both peace and the answer to the petition.
Hannah pursued God through devotion and prayer. She sought after God until she got a word from Him that brought her peace. Then she turned her peace into praise!
The book of 1st Samuel 1:19-20 records,
“Then they rose early in the morning and worshiped before the Lord, and returned and came to their house at Ramah. And Elkanah knew Hannah his wife, and the Lord remembered her. So it came to pass in the process of time that Hannah conceived and bore a son, and called his name Samuel, saying, “Because I have asked for him from the Lord.”
Don’t miss what Hannah did. She “worshipped” the LORD. Now, the fact she worshipped God is important but equally important is when she worshipped the LORD. Notice that Hannah worshipped before God answered her prayer! Her request was for a child, yet she wasn’t pregnant when she left the Temple. She returned home praising God even though she was not yet pregnant. Hannah positioned herself for God’s provision by turning her peace into praise!
I’m sure her heart was heavy, but she still worshipped the LORD. I would guess that her mind often had more questions than answers, but still, she worshipped the LORD. When the people around her ridiculed and mocked her, Hannah worshipped! Throughout the storm, the test, the trial, she worshipped, God was glorified and He answered according to His divine plan. Months went by, but the day came when Hannah held her newborn son in her arms. On that day she named him Samuel which means, “God has heard my prayer!”
Let’s go back to Psalm 22. This psalm is a prophetic portrait of the suffering that the Messiah would experience upon the cross one thousand years later. However, despite his pain and despair found in this psalm, there is also the declaration of worship to God.
The Big Take-Away:
Are you in a struggle?
Do you have a burden?
Are you waiting on God to answer a prayer?