Monday, October 25, 2010

Isaiah on Praising the Lord in the Celestial Kingdom

10 Sing unto the LORD a new song,
and his praise from the end of the earth,
ye that go down to the sea, and all that is therein;
the isles, and the inhabitants thereof.
11 Let the wilderness and the cities thereof lift up their voice,
the villages that Kedardoth inhabit:
let the inhabitants of the rock sing,
let them shout from the tops of the mountains.
12 Let them give glory unto the LORD,
and declare his praise in the islands.
(Isaiah 42:10-12)
I always wondered why the prophets in the scriptures were always so quick to praise the Lord. Then I started thinking about why any person deserves praise. It is because the praised person did something great, and from gratitude for that great work.

This caused me to think, “Well, if Isaiah tells me to sing praises to the Lord, what has the Lord done for me?” And I started thinking through my life and examining how the Lord helped me. My journals were a huge help for me to remember, and there were many incidents I could see in which the hand of the Lord was a big part. Taken all together as a mass, it is simply overwhelming.

Consider that in the celestial kingdom we will have a perfect remembrance of all that the Lord has done for us, and see it clearly. It will overpower us. It will awe us how kind He was to us, how carefully He led us through our trials, how watchful He was over us in danger, how ready He was to enlighten us when we asked for knowledge, how merciful He was when we repented of our sins, how He put people in our lives to bless us, in short, how He did all things for our good. It will absolutely overwhelm us with gratitude and wonder and we will be so happy about it that we will want to sing all the time and tell everyone who will listen what the Lord did for us.

But we won’t be content with just doing that.
And it shall come to pass,
that from one new moon to another,
and from one sabbath to another,
shall all flesh come to worship before me,
saith the LORD.
(Isaiah 66:23)
Everyone will want to come and thank Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ for everything he did and all of us will get a turn to do it. Crowds, thousands, millions and more will come, week after week, month after month, each in their turn, to worship and personally express their gratitude to the Lord.


LeAnn said...

Oh, what a grateful heart you gave to me today. I do have such deep gratitude for the blessings from my Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. I know that I will bow and kneel with tears in my eyes for the gratitude I will have of knowing that the Savior has been with me every step of the way. I do know that even now. Thanks, for reminding me to be more grateful.
Blessings and hugs to you today! Leann

Michaela Stephens said...

I'm glad you enjoyed this post.

I'm grateful that Isaiah wrote those things down to help us think about it and anticipate that wonderful day.

Matthew said...

When I taught in primary, we taught the 4 steps of prayer: Addressing, Thanking, Asking, and Closing. Notably missing is praise. I have found that adding that praise verbally in my prayers makes a difference in the experience. I feel more aware of the greatness of the gap that God is willing to bridge, and more aware of how deserving of praise He truly is.

Great post.

Ramona Gordy said...

Thank you for this post. My husband and I have recently experienced some "trials" in our life, that if they weren't so hard, we could have been in a reality show. My husband was hurt in the 1st storm-aggedan here on the East Coast last Dec. Needless to say,he was out of work until this past July. We have gone through many struggles but I got the sense that the Lord had prepared us for this one. A friend of mine was "cheerfully"complaining about her life. She looked at me and said" Look at you Ramona,boy you have had it rough,whats your complaint". I felt the Holy Spirit at that moment,"bring to my rememberance" all the the good things that the Lord has done for me. I said, "I have no complaint; we had food to eat,our bills were paid,the mortage did not go unpaid,our cars drove through the snow,we were able to pay our tithes and my husband is healthy.Yeah,God is Good.
Psalms 9:1-2
1 I will praise You, O LORD, with my whole heart; I will tell of all Your marvelous works.
2 I will be glad and rejoice in You;I will sing praise to Your name,O Most High.

Michaela Stephens said...

Matthew, what a great suggestion to add praise to our prayers. Could you share how you phrase your praises?

Ramona, I'm happy to hear that you were able to recognize how the Lord blessed your family and prepared you all for your difficulties and then helped you through them. That definitely worth writing about in your journal.

Matthew said...

Well, I keep it pretty simple, really. I mainly say that I am offering up my praise and worship towards Him. I will also sometimes offer a Hosanna, or a Gloria to Him (for example, saying "all glory to Thee").

The more I have sought to be led by the Spirit in my prayers, the more I have found that offering such praise has become quite natural, blending in easily with expressions of gratitude.

It felt odd, at first, because it isn't part of the LDS tradition to verbalize praise in such a way, but I feel it really has added a dimension to my prayers that wasn't there before.