For as long as I can remember, I have been saying the same prayer every night as I get ready to go to sleep. I am sure that most of you learned a similar version when you were children, and you might have even taught this prayer to your children and grandchildren. I still start my nightly prayers with this simple children’s prayer. I am still a child of God, so I find this prayer an appropriate way to begin every prayer. Most of you have probably heard of the ACTS of prayer.
A = Adoration. Praise the Lord for who He is.
C = Confession. Confess to the Lord your sins.
T = Thanksgiving. Thank the Lord for all that He has done.
S = Supplication. Bring your requests to the Lord.
It is funny how I can easily do CTS, but the A portion of a prayer stumps me. I have a hard time with worship and praise. I love the Lord with all my heart, and I think He deserves ALL the love and adoration I can muster. But, I get tongue-tied every time that I think about the praise portion of my prayers. I feel like it isn’t me talking, and I feel ingenuine.
So, I have been doing my research on praise and worship. The definition of worship, according to Wikipedia, is the feeling or expression of reverence and adoration for a deity. That is accurate, but that is not what I was looking for. I needed a way to express my feelings, so I went to the book of Psalms to take lessons from the king of worship; David.
1 Praise the Lord, my soul;
all my inmost being, praise his holy name.
2 Praise the Lord, my soul,
and forget not all his benefits—
3 who forgives all your sins
and heals all your diseases,
4 who redeems your life from the pit
and crowns you with love and compassion,
5 who satisfies your desires with good things
so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.
6 The Lord works righteousness
and justice for all the oppressed.
7 He made known his ways to Moses,
his deeds to the people of Israel:
8 The Lord is compassionate and gracious,
slow to anger, abounding in love.
9 He will not always accuse,
nor will he harbor his anger forever;
10 he does not treat us as our sins deserve
or repay us according to our iniquities.
11 For as high as the heavens are above the earth,
so great is his love for those who fear him;
12 as far as the east is from the west,
so far has he removed our transgressions from us.
13 As a father has compassion on his children,
so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him;
14 for he knows how we are formed,
he remembers that we are dust.
15 The life of mortals is like grass,
they flourish like a flower of the field;
16 the wind blows over it and it is gone,
and its place remembers it no more.
17 But from everlasting to everlasting
the Lord’s love is with those who fear him,
and his righteousness with their children’s children—
18 with those who keep his covenant
and remember to obey his precepts.
19 The Lord has established his throne in heaven,
and his kingdom rules over all.
20 Praise the Lord, you his angels,
you mighty ones who do his bidding,
who obey his word.
21 Praise the Lord, all his heavenly hosts,
you his servants who do his will.
22 Praise the Lord, all his works
everywhere in his dominion.
Praise the Lord, my soul.
David praises the Lord for all things. He reminds us of all of the works of the Lord. And, he reminds us that even though the Lord has every right to be angry with us, He is still slow to anger. The Lord knows that He made us from dust and that we are human and prone to sins. Thankfully, the Lord is compassionate, loving, and forgiving.
David makes a list of all of the things that the Lord has done for us. He forgives your sins, and He heals your diseases. He redeems your life and crowns you with love and compassion. And then, David reminds us who the Lord is. He is compassionate, gracious, slow to anger, and overflowing with love for all of us.
Reading David’s instruction manual on praise has helped me to understand how easy it is to worship His holy name. I hope these verses help you also.
Have A Blessed Day!