This is the Day the Lord has Made—Let us Rejoice and be Glad in It

Among believers one of the most revered and easiest remembered verses of scripture is abbreviated in the title above.  “This is the day that the Lord has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it” (Psalm 118:24).  Does this mean that we have a non-stop worship service all day long?  Well—yes and no!  If you mean by worship, that we attack the day with a grateful heart and a serious commitment to glorify the Lord in all things, then certainly it is a day devoted to worship.  If on the other hand, you believe we should stop several times in the course of the day to perform a ritual of worship, much like the practitioners of Islam; then the answer would be no. 

Religion has created a superficial dichotomy between the sacred and the secular.  In other words, we have isolated worship to be a “religious” activity.  However, the scripture makes it clear that worship is broader and more dynamic than that.  Worship is defined in such a way that it can be encompassed in virtually any activity we engage in throughout the course of any given day.  Psalm 150 concludes with the proclamation, “Let everything that has breath praise the Lord” (v. 6).  Paul the Apostle declares, “And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him” (Colossians 3:17).

 I don’t know about everyone else, but I basically breathe while doing everything that I do.  I personally believe that the divide between sacred and secular activities is oversold.  Because God is the Creator of all things and He has decreed, “Let everything that has breath praise the Lord. Praise the Lord” (Psalm 50:6).  I should have praise for God foremost in my heart in the midst of everything which I do. 

Here is the great thing about this whole idea!  I don’t have to invest a lot of time and energy in “sin management” when I keep the Lord at the forefront of my thought and behavior cycles throughout the course of any given day.  The intentional pursuit of wrong behavior is counter cultural to such beliefs and patterns of thought.  The dissonance between my praise for God and sinful reactions to frustration, irritation or temptation creates an emotional environment that is ripe for repentance when it is warranted.  In other words, my heart and my mind are more attuned to God’s presence and the direction and conviction of His Spirit.  This is because my heart is His.

The goal is not sinless perfection.  However, it is that I long for the capacity for swift recalibration of my heart when necessary.  My heart or soul has been uniquely designed to believe in, seek after and long for the presence of the Lord.  Purposeful activity such as prayer and praise grant ready access for conviction and the repentance that must follow.  This keeps the intimacy of my devotion to the Lord fully intact.  “Let everything that has breath praise the Lord!  Praise the Lord”!

Advertisements