In our journey of life, from baby to adulthood, our lifestyle changes because of the demand for the various stages in life. There is a time when you were called a dependent. All your needs were met by your parents or guardian but once you became independent, your lifestyle will have to change. You will get married and have children so it won’t be all about you anymore. Teens look at their parents and all they can see is “boring”. They do not know that their parent was once like them. When responsibility begins to come up in their lives they will have to begin to readjust.
Change in the way we live will come overtime but we need to be able to manage the change that comes. People who did not manage change well ended up with addictions they cannot stop, debts they cannot pay or relationship they cannot put back together. But there is one thing that should never change and I can tell you that it is not optional. It is not something you can choose to do with or without. It is one lifestyle that should not change in the believer which is a lifestyle of Praise.
They say attitude brings altitude, I believe that. Here is another one, gratitude brings fortitude. It protects all that you have. While ungratefulness opens the door to the devil to steal, kill and destroy, gratefulness is a form of resistance. When you resist the devil, he will flee. When all you see is God’s goodness, there is a flow of his blessings but when all you see is things not working out for you, the devil will capitalise on it and make it a reality for you. Gratitude should not be a variable; it should be a constant.
Having a lifestyle of praise and thanksgiving is the sweetest way to live. David said without any remorse or shame or guilt these words. “I will BLESS the Lord at ALL TIMES; his PRAISE shall CONTINUALLY be in my mouth.” (Psalm 34:1.) When we say “Somebody bless the Lord,” we are talking about magnifying him (Ps 34:3). To magnify means to make bigger. He should be bigger than our experiences. If we have a bad experience or bad times come, as we praise God, he becomes bigger than the situation. It is not that God actually becomes bigger but that the limitation we have put on God in our minds begins to give way. Our fears and frights begin to give way to faith. We begin to see possibilities, we begin to see progress. When we look at our heavenly Father, gratitude comes, rejoicing comes and I tell you, rejoicing is never the losing side. The rejoicing side does not experience or accept disgrace or shame in anyway (Ps 34:5).
There are times where things are really bad and you just want to complain and talk about the problem empathically and emotionally but the Lord is saying NO! What he is saying “YES” to is to Praise him despite the times and seasons that you are in. If you are experiencing no money, to God it is praise time: ”Thank you Father that you will supply me the needed resources according to your riches in glory.” If there is increase in finances, it is still praise time: “Thank you Father that you daily loaded me with benefits.” Our attitude to both should be gratitude. Times and seasons change but the praise lifestyle should never change in your life. “So you are saying that I should praise God even when am drowning?” Without a blink, YES. In fact it is what saves you.
This is how it works. Here is the revelation. Here lies the blessing people. You are not thanking God for the PROBLEM but rather HIS PROMISES. Check out this scripture:
1 Thessalonians 5:18 (KJV)
18 In everything GIVE THANKS: for this is the WILL OF GOD in Christ Jesus concerning you.
When you thank God for his promises, you are at the center of his Will. Another scripture that confirms this is:
Romans 4:20-21 (KJV)
20 He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, GIVING GLORY TO GOD;
21 And being fully persuaded that, WHAT HE HAD PROMISED, he was able also to perform.
Abraham was focusing on the promise and not the problem. When you are complaining, you are concentrating on the problem thereby moving outside God’s provisions. You are rejecting the blessings he has bestowed upon you. It may seem ok to always complain because you believe you will feel better after it but who wants to feel better temporarily and the problem still remains? Our minds begin to accept the problem as status quo. Complaining is like discussing with the problem as a friend. You cannot accept a problem and at the same time get rid of it. Rather you want to be outside the problem and be totally living in the blessings. Amen!
Gratitude does not listen to any voice that signifies complaint. You looked at your bank account and it told you “You are broke.” Your phone is ringing and the name showing is a person that you owe. Your phone is telling you “You are in debt and cannot pay so do not answer the phone.” But if you keep accepting these negative voices, you will always remain stuck. Listen rather to the greater voice of your Father in heaven who is saying that you should praise him not for the problem but the promises that he has given you. If you knew what you have, would you not thank the Lord for it? Of course you will. Did God not say I will supply all your needs according to my riches in glory by Christ Jesus and not according to your salary? (Philippians 4:19). You thank him for that. If you believed it, you would have thanked him for that. Christ has deposited all spiritual blessing that you will ever need in you. Thanksgiving and praise is an effectual way to draw it out to the physical. Once you know what you have in Christ finished work, oh my goodness you will thank God for that and gradual positive changes will begin to show in your life.
Whenever we have the desire to keep on complaining, just remember that anyone who is always complaining is coming from a place of deficit. What you say and how you say things can show your outlook in life. That is why complainers lack things. The devil always attack from the place where you lack something. So if you give him a place to stay, he will build a stronghold. Praises brought the walls of Jericho down. There is no place for the devil to build anything when praise is your lifestyle. The devil may attack from a place of deficit but we come from a place of abundance. That is why we praise him. The life we have is an abundant life. The lifestyle of gratitude is the lifestyle we all must decide to walk in and we will see amazing breakthroughs in our lives.