August 3

Psalm 34:1-3

“I will bless the Lord at all times; his praise shall continually be in my mouth.” vs. 1

Occasionally we will meet people who regularly include words of praise and thanksgiving in their conversation. They’ll say, “Praise God,” or “Thank you, Jesus,” without any hesitation or sense of irony. They really mean what they say and aren’t at all reluctant to give public testimony of their faith. Like the psalmist they want to keep the praise of the Lord continually in their mouths. Other people of faith are reluctant to speak so openly–perhaps they’re afraid of being offensive or misunderstood, or maybe they’re afraid of appearing pietistic or overly religious. Whatever the reason, large numbers of people are silent when they could be openly witnessing to their faith convictions. For some it’s a part of their denominational culture–they’ve learned by observation and experience that religious exuberance should be curbed, that expressions of praise are for worship on Sunday, and not for the workplace on Monday. As a result curses and filthy talk have actually become more socially acceptable in our culture than offering blessings to the Lord! Now it is true that extravagant displays of piety can be hypocritical and an exaggeration, but stifling our praises in favor of silence is surely not the only alternative. There are a multitude of times in every day to give voice to our grateful hearts–and if others hear those exultations they will be touched and blessings will abound.

Thought for the Day: Why is it so acceptable to use four letter words in our culture?

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