I’ve told you that I struggle with depression. I’ve also diagnosed myself with seasonal affective disorder. I struggle most when we have long stretches with little/no sunlight. It’s been gray and rainy a lot here lately! I have a friend who has also been battling stretches of deep sadness. I suggested to her that she put on some upbeat, uplifting praise and worship music and sing – even if she didn’t feel like it at first. Often this is helpful to me, but I wasn’t really sure why – couldn’t explain it in words.
Today, I heard a woman speak about the power of praise. She said that praise elevates us – spiritually and mentally because it takes the focus off of ourselves and places it on God who is all good and all worthy of praise. That’s it! Sometimes when we are hurting, we can’t think of anything but our hurt. It consumes us. In humbling ourselves before our God and singing His praise – singing and praying despite the hurt – through the hurt – we are lifted up! So many things about our faith is paradoxical. This is one of those great paradoxes!
Even if God never did another thing for you or for me, God is still worthy of praise. He loved each and every one of us into being. He thought of us long before He created us in our mother’s wombs. He humbled Himself and took on human flesh. He suffered and died for you and for me!
I was blessed to spend sometime this morning in prayer and praise with a group of faith- filled women. That experience of worship set the tone for the rest of my day and gave me a boost I’ve needed. God is so good!
Next time you are feeling blue, stressed or distressed, put on some praise and worship music – even if it doesn’t appeal to you at the moment – even if you feel too tired to do it. Pray, “Come Holy Spirit.” Listen to the music until you find your voice. Sing! Sing! Sing to Jesus! You will bring a smile to His face and console His Sacred Heart! It will likely make you feel better too.
Here are a few of my favorite praise and worship songs from recent months. “My Story” reminds me of my momma. When I was a girl, she used to play hymns on our baby grand piano. One of my favorites was “This is my story. This is my song…praising my Savior all the day long…” The modern version sort of gives a “shout out” to this old hymn. I’m putting links to these in case you are interested. Enjoy!
Also good – particularly for women are Audrey Assad, Joy Williams, Plumb, Kitty Cleveland, Kara Klein