When You Need To Talk Yourself Into Worshiping
What we tell ourselves is important. Right? We all know the results of negative self-talk and how important it is to replace those thoughts with positive, encouraging words.
That goes for our spiritual and worship life as well. David had it figured out when he said to himself,“Bless the LORD, O my soul, And all that is within me, bless His holy name. Bless the LORD, O my soul, And forget none of His benefits” (Psalm 103:1-2). He then went on to list the mercies God had poured out in his own life as well as in the lives of others.
I don’t think this was just an intellectual exercise on David’s part. I think it was the prompting of the Holy Spirit reminding him of his need – his need to literally command himself to “Bless the Lord!” Maybe he was struggling to believe truth in a hard place. Maybe he was battling negative thoughts. But he stopped dead in his tracks and said, “Listen soul, you need to bless the Lord! Don’t forget who He is or what He’s done!” (my paraphrase).
David wasn’t the only one. Here’s some more self-talk from the psalmists:“Why are you in despair, O my soul? And why have you become disturbed within me? Hope in God, for I shall again praise Him for the help of His presence” (Psalm 42:5). “Bless the LORD, O my soul! O LORD my God, You are very great; You are clothed with splendor and majesty” (Psalm 104:1). “Praise the LORD! Praise the LORD, O my soul! I will praise the LORD while I live; I will sing praises to my God while I have my being. Do not trust in princes, In mortal man, in whom there is no salvation” (Psalm 146:1-3).(Good self-reminder at the end of who not to trust in!) Or sometimes we just need to start with “Wake up, my soul!” (Psalm 57:8). We all have those times when worship clearly a struggle. Life has done its thing to us, and we just don’t seem to have the focus or energy we need to think clearly – much less worship.
That’s when we need to stop, and respond to the Spirit of God’s inevitable prompting to have the right kind of talk with ourselves:
Remember who your God is and worship Him! He’s who you need to see right now. He is your truth, light, hope, and peace in this place. Remember and pour yourself out to Him now. Invite His Spirit to replace your thoughts with all that He is. Confess your sin. Release your weaknesses and burdens. Give Him all that you carry and all that you are. Pour it out at His feet and soak in His presence. He is all you need. He alone is worthy of all you have to offer Him.
There are many things that can derail us on this journey of being a worshiper of our great God. Thankfully, they can all be diverted by Spirit-led self-talk. Remember who He is. Remember what He’s done. Bless the Lord!
How do you handle those “Wake up, soul!” moments?
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