“Praise God in his sanctuary; praise him in his mighty heavens. Praise him for his acts of power; praise him for his surpassing greatness. Praise him with the sounding of the trumpet, praise him with the harp and lyre, praise him with tambourine and dancing, praise him with the strings and pipe, praise him with the clash of cymbals, praise him with resounding cymbals. Let everything that has breath praise the Lord.” (Psalm 150:1-6)
As the year comes to a close, many of us take the time to intentionally look back on the events of the past year. We think about all that has transpired over the past twelve months. We consider what has changed, and what has stayed the same. We remember the people who started the year with us, but are no longer here. Also we welcome new loved ones that have entered our lives for the first time this year.
A lot can happen in a single year. With that in mind, I think it’s a great practice for us, as followers of Christ, to celebrate all that God has done over the course of this past year. Maybe this was the year you finally landed in the career you’ve been working toward. Maybe this is the year you found a marriage partner for the rest of your life. Possibly, this is the year you saw reconciliation and redemption take place in a relationship that had been broken for years. If you’ve seen God answer your prayers in amazing ways this year, don’t miss the opportunity to celebrate Him, praise Him, and thank Him for His provision.
On the other hand, some of you might find yourselves in a place where you’re still waiting for God to answer your prayers. You’re still hoping for that broken relationship to be fixed. You’re still waiting to be healed from your pain. You’re still praying for God to come through for you. If that’s you, celebrating God’s provision will look a little different for you. Instead of celebrating what God has already provided, you can celebrate that you have a God who freely gives us hope. You have a God who is fully capable of meeting your needs, even if you haven’t seen Him do that yet. Even in the waiting, you can celebrate, praise, and thank your Heavenly Father for His love and His sovereignty.
Some of you have a lot to celebrate now and some of you are still waiting to see your prayers answered. Regardless of which group of people you fall into, I would encourage you to be intentional in praising God. As Psalm 150:6 says, “Let everything that has breath praise the Lord.” Be faithful in offering your praise to God this year, and remain hopeful for all the ways He’s going to provide in the new year.