Do you remember the old Sunday School chorus based on the healing of the lame man by Peter and John at the temple's gate called Beautiful in Acts 3?
Silver and Gold have I not
But such that I have give I unto you
In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth
Rise up and walk
He was walking and leaping and praising God x2
In the name of Jesus Christ of
Rise up and walk.
The crippled man rose up, he walked, and leaped and praised God. The people around at the temple saw him walking, leaping and praising God. And they recognized that it was the same man who used to sit at the temple's gate begging for aims.
They were filled with wonder and amazement at what had happened to him. Now, this man was crippled from birth.
The wonderful works of God puts His glory on display in our lives. People and nations, including the heathen, shall see it and declare that our God is good. When God moves on our behalf at the appointed time to show pity on us and to favour us, people around us shall see it and reverently worship the name of the Lord. Kings shall praise Him because of His mighty works in our lives (Ps 102:13-15).
Great was David's distress and affliction in Ps 102, that he sat alone like a bereaved sparrow on a rooftop. He was inwardly depressed by his afflictions and trials that he lost the will to live. But David was confident that God will answer his prayers because he knew that God will not despise the plea of the destitute. He was confident that God would not forget forsake or abandon him.
For the Lord looks down from His Holy heaven to behold us His people on earth, and to listen to our plea. Because of His faithfulness to us, men will declare His praise and people shall gather together to worship Him.
It gives us such an assurance to know experientially that God looks down from heaven and He behold us. His eyes are intent on us and He is greatly concerned about us. David was assured that as a result of the anticipated deliverance, the name of the Lord will be praised when the people of God gather together in
This same confidence and assurance was expressed in Ps 126 as he declared: "When the Lord turned again the captivity of
we were like them that dream." God did an amazing thing in their lives to
the extent that it was like a dream. It was too good to be true. Because of
this awesome work of God, they laughed with joy and overflowed with praise. It
was so loud and copious that even the heathen (that is, those who don’t believe
in God), who heard them, had to affirm that their God had done great things for them. Zion
Isn't it wonderful when the display of God's mightiness and faithfulness in our lives would cause even those who do not acknowledge God to declare and confirm that our God is good and worthy to be praised? When God gives us a testimony that does not need explanation, everyone who sees us would acknowledge the faithfulness of God on our behalf and give praise to His Holy name.
That was the case for me last Sunday. It was the Annual Thanksgiving and International Day in church, a day we set apart to bring offering of thanks and praise to God in a truly multicultural and international way. We are from different nations and cultures, and we add this diversity to our celebration of God's goodness in our lives. It is usually an extended service followed by a food fellowship during which we share food from our different countries to wrap-up the celebration.
It was an exceptional day of exhilarating joy for me for a number of reasons. Remember, God has done great things for us, whereof we are glad. First, it was the first time we did not have to worry about having someone to go back home to refill the oxygen tank because we would not have sufficient oxygen for the whole period we had to be in church. Last year, my husband who is in the choir had to leave mid-service to dash back home and refill the oxygen bottle.
Secondly, there were people at this special service who had not seen me for over year. The joy they expressed when they saw me without the supplemental oxygen paraphernalia is indescribable. They were so glad for me that they kept praising God and thanking Him for my healing. I was truly overwhelmed at their reaction. They had never seen me before without the paraphernalia. It was a unique sight for them.
One of them was the Guest Preacher. He surely gave praise to God for what He has done in my life and he declared that this is a testimony that needed no explanation.
But there can be no testimony without a test. And it does not matter how long the tests and trials last for. It is the victory that God gives us over the difficult and challenging situations that brings the praise and put the glory of God on display in our lives. Like the man who was blind from birth and was healed by Jesus in John 9, it was for the glory of God to be made manifest that he had to go through that difficult situation. Our calamities and afflictions are for the glory of God and to make manifest His works.
In Matthew 9:8 and 15:31, the people were amazed, astonished, awestruck and they marveled when they saw the dumb speaking, the maimed become whole, the lame walking and the blind seeing. These are testimonies of the power of Jesus to heal at work in the lives of these individuals which could not be hidden. Then the people praised and glorified God. That power to heal and to deliver is still at work today in the lives of those who put their trust and hope in Him and believe in His name.
What we need to do in our day of trouble, distress and affliction, is to call upon the name of the Lord. As He promised in Ps 50 verses 15 and 23, He will answer us and He will deliver us. And what should our response be to this? We praise and glorify His name. But that is not all, many people around us will see it and also give praise to God because of what He has done for us.
David anticipated God's deliverance. He was very confident that God will not leave him that his difficult situation, therefore he was able to declare in advance that God will be glorified and praised because of what He will do on behalf of His people. We can begin to give praise to God while we are still in that difficult situation when we are confident that God is able to deliver us as He has promised.
We can praise our way through our days of trouble and distress just like Paul and Silas praised their way out of the prison. See the number of lives touched because these men confidently praised and worshiped God even while in bondage and shackles. God was so moved that He had to step into their situation and that cause the earth to quake bringing about their deliverance and release.
Dear Friends, the year 2013 is rapidly coming to an end, whatever the situation you may be facing right now, no matter how long it has lasted; you may even feel as if God has abandon you or He seems so far off and you have not seen your desires fulfilled yet. Let me this assurance give you, this situation is for the glory of God to be revealed and be put on display in your life. One thing I can assure you of is that, God loves you passionately with an amazing and unending love, and He is daily putting that love on display in your life.
Look back, look around you and then look up. There is so much for which you can thank and praise God. And soon, at the fullest of time, God will put His glory on display in your life such that men will see it, they will marvel, and they will rejoice and glorify God because of you.
This assurance alone is a reason and an opportunity to rejoice in the Lord and be glad. For those who sow in tears will come again with rejoicing and exhilarating joy as they bring the sheaves in.
May God's glory be on display in your life and home this Christmas Season and beyond.