By CRAIG HARRIS
Psalm 33: 1-1 (NIV): 1 Sing joyfully to the LORD, you righteous; it is fitting for the upright to praise him. 2 Praise the LORD with the harp; make music to him on the ten-stringed lyre. 3 Sing to him a new song; play skillfully, and shout for joy. 4 For the word of the LORD is right and true; he is faithful in all he does. 5 The LORD loves righteousness and justice; the earth is full of his unfailing love. 6 By the word of the LORD were the heavens made, their starry host by the breath of his mouth. 7 He gathers the waters of the sea into jars; he puts the deep into storehouses. 8 Let all the earth fear the LORD; let all the people of the world revere him. 9 For he spoke, and it came to be; he commanded, and it stood firm. 10 The LORD foils the plans of the nations; he thwarts the purposes of the peoples. 11 But the plans of the LORD stand firm forever, the purposes of his heart through all generations.
There is power in the spoken word. God spoke the universe into existence with the word of his mouth. And we have the privilege of praising him with ours. But our praise should extend beyond what we say or sing, it should be a part of who we are. This psalm says to "play skillfully", to give God our best in church and out. I encourage you to give God your best this new year. Don't just phone in your worship, put your heart into it. After all, he has been so good to us. He created us and sustains us by his power. He is faithful to watch over us.
Sing a new song to him. Introduce new songs into our worship services, sure, but also realize that our relationship with God is alive and active. We don't just remember a good man and give him our respects, we have fellowship with a Savior who is central to our lives. We worship a God whose mercies are new every morning. I like listening to Christian radio stations to see if I can hear a new song that expresses how I feel and how much I love God.
This passage also reminds us that God's will is always done. He is God and he gets his way.
He allows us freedom to choose and live our lives, but ultimately, his will is done. Only a powerful God could do this, and our God is a powerful God. This new year, give him your best and tell him how you feel about him so he will know, and so the whole world will know.
Autographed copies of Craig's fiction novel “The Dead Peasants File” are for sale at Blaser's Books in downtown Palestine. Harris is the pastor at Brushy Creek and Mt. Vernon United Methodist churches.