‘A Love Supreme’ for God: John Coltrane’s Story

John Coltrane’s A Love Supreme is easily one of my favorite recordings of jazz music.  As noted in the Arun Rath story I quote below, it is his love for God that fueled this awesome 1964 recording by the talented jazz saxophonist.  It was released 50 years ago this year (February 1965).  How Coltrane got to the point of creating this classic album is reflected in his personal life.

  • Only 40 years old when he died in Long Island in 1967, today would have been the jazz musician’s 89th birthday.
  • He underwent a transformation in the months leading up to the December 1964 recording.  His new life view sparked his praise of God, including this 50-year old jazz masterpiece.

Personally, it took me a while to appreciate this album.   Like my spiritual growth, my taste in jazz music evolved over time; initially a Ronnie Laws (another saxophonist) lover, I grew to love the jazz expressions of John Coltrane, Keith Jarrett, & McCoy Tyner.  Once I came to understand Coltrane’s music, it was hard to really appreciate Laws anymore.

  • Excerpts of two NPR stories on this classic jazz recording are offered below.

As I read Eric Westervelt’s post, I thought of the importance of knowing someone’s story.  How Coltrane (Sept. 23, 1926 – July 17, 1967) came to his respectful praise of God, and what that change meant, is a fascinating story.


A Love Supreme is Coltrane’s ultimate spiritual testament: The “love supreme” he describes is God’s love.


While A Love Supreme is a recognized musical masterpiece, it had enormous personal significance for Coltrane.  In the spring of 1957, his dependence on heroin and alcohol lost him one of the best jobs in jazz.   He was playing sax and touring with Miles Davis’ popular group when he became unreliable and strung out.   Alternately catatonic and brilliant, Coltrane’s behavior and playing became increasingly erratic.   Davis fired him after a live show that April.

Soon after, Coltrane resolved to clean up his act.   He would later write, in the 1964 liner notes to A Love Supreme, “In the year of 1957, I experienced, by the grace of God, a spiritual awakening, which was to lead me to a richer, fuller, more productive life.”

But Coltrane didn’t always stay the clean course.   As he also wrote in the album’s notes, “As time and events moved on, I entered into a phase which is contradictory to the pledge and away from the esteemed path.   But thankfully now, through the merciful hand of God, I do perceive and have been fully reinformed of his omnipotence.   It is truly a love supreme.” [Emphasis added]


Check out:

Greg Silverthorne, 9/21/15

66 Assurance Way

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I Sang, I ended a Storm (My Singing Testimony)

At times in life, you just need to ‘tell a storm’:

Go away, My God surrounds me!

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The killing of 9 members of the Mother Emanuel AME Church on June 17, 2015, by a racially-violent white man, was senseless and sad!  As an African-American man born two years before the Birmingham Church bombing, I’m not sure which bothered me more, the racial hatred of the shooter or the place (a Charleston SC church) where he chose to kill the nine Black Bible Study participants.  I published “The Christ is Right: Go Get Your Prize” on June 14th.   After learning about the tragedy in SC 3 days later, I hit a ‘wall’.   It wounded my desire to think and write ‘in the spirit’ for this blog.

To know that a massacre, reminiscent of the 1963 Birmingham Church bombing in Alabama, could still happen in 2015 deeply saddened me.  That a white florist in Shelby NC took the bold actions (June 18th) which allowed the shooter to be promptly captured was very reassuring.  I’m not sure if that would have happened 52 years ago.  Moreover, 2 days after the SC shooting, seeing how forgiving the Black Christian families were to Dylann Roof was a pleasant surprise.  While the Bible tells us to be forgiving, that’s easier said than done!  In spite of these 2 facts, and the quickness with which Roof was captured, I still had this subtle but lingering bitter feeling that wouldn’t go away.  The closest thing I can personally recall that felt similar was the feeling I got after the 9/11 terrorist attack in 2001.

  • As a Christian, what do I do for God and my church?  I’ve been a member of the Gospel Choir at my church since 2009.  I’ve been blogging here on 66 Assurance Way since September 2013.  These two things, along with the Dare to Work Ministry I founded at my church, are part of what I do as a Christian.  They are part of my walk.

As God felt my pain, in the months after the mid-June church shooting, he crafted a way to deal with it.  With my choir’s Anniversary just a few weeks ago, my fellow members and I had to learn 4 new songs. That involved 3 ½ hours of practice (!) on two days.  Moreover, in preparation for a local missions convention, a choir, one made up of the members of all five church choirs, was assembled; we practiced once.  Ironically, Blessed Assurance was one of the songs the Mass Choir practiced.

So, the ground work for the Lord’s plan was set.  I can see God saying the following to himself:

Greg is not taking the killing of Mother Emanuel 9 in South Carolina well.  I need to deliver a real big blessing to get him through this trial.  3 choir practices for two different choirs, in preparation for 2 singing events, will do the job!  I need him back in my Christian blogging army.  I can’t forsake him now.

66AssuranceWay blogger


I think my now you see where this story is going.

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A Stranded Sailor’s Story: 66 Days of Praying

ScreenHunter_1319 Jun. 06 13.50When I first heard about this story, on the day before Good Friday, I saw God’s fingerprints all over it. When I read about the man’s praying and demonstrated faith, and that of his parents, I knew God had surely sustained and saved this grateful man.

  • Do you believe in miracles?
  • Do you remember the pilot (Chesley “Sulley” Sullenburger) who landed a US Airways plane with over 150 people on the Hudson River in 2009? (geese flew into the engines, which disabled them).  Not a single life was loss!
  • Jesus Christ was in the wilderness 40 days (Matthew 4) and prayed.  While the Devil sought to tempt Jesus while he was in a vulnerable situation, he wasn’t successful.

As reported in Christian Examiner, Rescued sailor: ‘I was just praying to God’ (4/3/15):

 “I was just praying to God, ‘please protect me,'” to survive the 66-day ordeal, [Louis] Jordan said after returning safely to land.  According to CBS News, he said he had not had much time on the water before the incident.   But details about his disciplined approach to survival appear to belie his claimed inexperience at sea . . .

He limited his water intake to about a pint a day, praying daily, “‘Please God, send me some rain, send me some water,” he told WAVY TV in Portsmouth.

Tell it, Tell it: Your Christian Story

“God’s Been So Good To Me, I Cannot Cannot Tell It All.

He’s Opened Doors For Me, I Cannot Cannot Tell It All.

He Made A Way For Me, I Cannot Cannot Tell It All.

He Supplies My Every Need, I Cannot Cannot Tell It All”

~ Chicago Mass Choir, “I Cannot Tell It All”

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As I noted in Your Stories: The Roots of your Christian Life:

The stories of your life are what define you as a unique person and child of God . . . Everyone has a story, a set of stories to be more exact, that I feel stand as the roots of their life.   As Christians, the soil in which those distinct roots are planted includes, in part, our spiritual values.

What you have personally ‘been through’, endured, and achieved is revealed in your stories.   Know the stories, know the man.   Have you heard a story this year that still lingers in your mind?

As I approach the end of this Series, I felt I needed to explore a few things not explored in that early-Series post last year.


Be a Willing Witness, not a Silent Witness

Whether in spiritual warfare, or a legal battle, being a silent witness can have a major impact on how things ‘go down’. As I sat in Bible Study last March, the nature of survivor’s guilt was discussed. The importance of witnesses was emphasized. The Tuesday night fellowship teacher explained, ‘God always leaves one’ to serve as a witness to others.  While talking about surviving a dangerous situation, it became clear -to me at least- that the role of being ‘the one’ and telling one’s story was important in many situations, ordinary and extraordinary.

Telling one’s story, be it an escape from Danger or an unexpected, timely Blessing you’ve received, is an important part of Christian life.   For you to hear a story, it has to be told first, right?  Abiding Christians should tell stories when suitable opportunities arise.   Doing so pleases the Lord; as well, it’s displeasing to the Devil.

LESSONS:

  • Be a Willing Witness, not a passive Silent Witness

  • Tell it, don’t keep it (your story) to yourself

  • Be it a Praise Report or a Testimony, speaking in public-or a face-to-face meeting- availeth much

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Barbara Brown: Leading with a Special Purpose

BarbaraBrown
A devoted Educator, Barbara A. Brown is an award-winning NC Principal who loves children. At every school she’s led or taught, her dedication and teaching talents have been felt.  A Christian, she’s a fellow Church member as well.   Who knew that such an accomplished career professional was standing in the same choir stand with me every 3rd Sunday?


Do to others as you would have them do to you.  (Luke 6:31 NIV)


 “I knew at a very young age that I would work with children.   I love being an educator and I’m passionate about discovering innovative ways to help children to be successful”.

“During [my] first five years of teaching, I was named Young Educator of the Year at Stoneville Elementary School.   I took ventures in education that no one at the time would take.   I invited parents into my classroom that couldn’t help their children at home.   I took time out to teach them so that they could help their children”.

She currently serves as Principal at the Central Elementary School. In 2009, Brown was asked, by the Rockingham County School Superintendent, to lead the Eden NC school. She’d been quite successful as Principal at another public elementary school.

“After two years as principal, I was named Principal of the Year for [the county].   In December 2014, Central Elementary was named Rockingham County School’s Signature School, for it’s high growth in reading and math”.


The NC educator holds several academic degrees.  In her own education and professional development, Brown has read many books.  One book, which clearly holds a special place in her life, is the Bible.  In telling her story, she cited three scriptures:

She states: “My life is governed by my faith as a believer.  I am truly blessed and have always been blessed from day one of my life.  I give God credit, for he has taken me through a lifetime of exceptional experiences in phenomenal places”.

  • God’s Promise, Brown feels, “gives all of us confidence and purpose to move on from yesterday’s shortcomings into a new day and a new beginning, filled with great opportunities for learning and growth”.
  • Her Life Motto: “A New Day – A New Beginning”

So we say with confidence, “The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me?” (Hebrews 13:6 NIV)


  • Did her biggest trial come in a classroom or school?  No.

Her “biggest life challenge and blessing”, Brown stated, occurred just 5 years ago.  Her life’s work, teaching young children and “leading with a purpose”, faced it’s biggest battle.

“I had a massive stroke and all of my doctors told me that I should not be walking or talking.   But yet here I am! .  .  .  I know that it was only God and He alone who restored my health.   He protected my body and mind and I thank Him daily for what I consider a second chance at life.   It’s not what you do in life, but how you live your life.   It’s about the journey.   I get great satisfaction from former students who tell me that I made a difference in their life and that I was the reason they pursued a career in Education.   I am truly blessed to fulfill my mission in a job I love: Making a difference in others’ lives”.

It wasn’t until Barbara Brown told her story, in the Oak Ridge Times (Oak Ridge First Baptist Church magazine, March 2015) that I fully appreciated what she’s been called to do – and does so well!   Brown’s work, and her worship, is surely ‘for real’.

She embodies the power of all Christians to tell their Story.  Ironically, while Brown and I have been members of the same Choir for many years, I never knew how gifted (as an Educator) and blessed (as a stroke survivor) she was.  “My Worship is For Real”, the Bishop Larry Trotter song which sparked this Series, begins: “You don’t know my Story, all the things that I’ve been through; You can’t feel my Pain, what I had to go through to get here, You’ll never understand my Praise, don’t try to figure it out; because my Worship is for real“.

  • I strongly believe that her teaching gift, which she’s ably shared with hundreds of students, is a key reason for her Blessing – the protection and healing of her body after her medical storm.  I strongly sense the innovative Educator believes that God has kept her, has made a way for her, so she can continue sharing her gifts.  When Brown was sick, the Lord healed her.  He made a way!
  • Do you have an untold story that could greatly encourage others?  If so, I hope you won’t hesitate to tell it – like Barbara Brown did.  To God be the glory.

Grace, mercy, and peace to you.

  Greg Silverthorne, 66 Assurance Way


I lift up my eyes to the hills– where does my help come from?  My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth.  The LORD will keep you from all harm– he will watch over your life; the LORD will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore. (Psalm 121: 1-2, 7-8 NIV)

Our Songs: The Power of ‘Joyful Noise’ (Christians)

  by Greg Silverthorne

3771238890_6e758917deDo you sing in a Choir at your church?   The role of singing is more important to the Christian worship experience than many realize.   Making a ‘joyful noise’ to the Lord glorifies him – and drives away the Devil.   In this post, the power of our songs and singing is explored.  As well, Gospel videos and Scripture -to support you in your personal devotion- are provided. Glorying God, Ambushing Satan In his thought-provoking, insightful Sermon Ambushing Satan with Song(Desiring God Foundation), John Piper states:

“We have two great weapons in worship: the Word of God and song. So let us give heed to the Word of God and let us sing with all our heart”

Exploring the ‘singers on the frontline of battle’, two verses from 2 Chronicles 20 state:

21 After consulting the people, Jehoshaphat appointed men to sing to the Lord and to praise him for the splendor of his holiness as they went out at the head of the army, saying:   Give thanks to the Lord, for his love endures forever.” 22 As they began to sing and praise, the Lord set ambushes against the men of Ammon and Moab and Mount Seir who were invading Judah, and they were defeated.   2 Chronicles 20: 21-22 (NIV)   [Emphasis added]

While he references many who have written on the role of songs and singing, I found his quoting of Martin Luther (Here I Stand, p. 266) to be particularly interesting.   In that book, Luther states:

Music is a fair and lovely gift of God which has often wakened and moved me to the joy of preaching . . . Next after theology I give to music the highest place and the greatest honor.  I would not change what little I know of music for something great.  Experience proves that next to the Word of God only music deserves to be extolled as the mistress and governess of the feelings of the human heart.


Piper’s article, along with a close reading of Colossians 3, give one a good handle on why singing and songs are so important to the lives of Christians.  It is through singing, including Choirs during worship services, that Christians glorify God – and ‘ambush’ Satan.

  • Check out Piper’s sermon (link) – Full transcript and audio.

Gospel Songs that Bless the Lord & Beat the Devil!

To publish a post on musical praise without any music (videos) didn’t make a lot of sense.  I’ve chosen a few of my favorite Gospel videos.

Part of the power of the Black Church experience I’ve personally witnessed lies in, I feel, the anointed choirs of those churches.  While I hold the Pastor (Dr. Rev. James A. Webster) of my church (Oak Ridge First Baptist Church) in very high regard, the choirs at my church are a big part of what make going to church (since 2007) for me such a joy!  As I read the transcript of John Piper’s sermon, I came to realize that many other vibrant churches also offer their members the same joy.   They bless and magnify the Lord, and beat the Devil, every single Sunday!

While my church training as a Choir member, under the direction of the Minister of Music (Dr. Derrick W. Webster), taught me the spiritual concepts covered in this post, I wanted to share them with others today.

  • A well-led church, of any denomination, with anointed choirs makes for a Sunday worship experience that’s pleasing to the Lord, it’s members, and it’s guests.   There’s a spiritual synergy of good preaching (Ministers) and good singing (Choirs) that effectually draws the Holy Spirit – and forces the wicked Devil to flee.
  • Let the church say Amen.  Let the church’s Choirs sing Praises!
  • Nine Gospel songs, listed below, can be found on Page 2 of this post.  Some are current and still playing regularly on the radio airwaves.  Some are older songs that I still enjoy.  One, “Holy One”, is by a local (Greensboro NC) choir that has never recorded (to my knowledge), but has a video that I find to be phenomenally anointed and powerful!

Click Page 2 below, and fasten your seat belts, for the following videos:

Champion – Shekinah Glory Ministry

I Rather Have Jesus – Dallas Fort Worth Choir

Holy One – St. Matthews UMC Fellowship Choir featuring Kaize Adams and Tyshawn Griggs

I Came to Magnify the Lord – Bishop Clarence McClendon and the Harvest Fire Mega Mass Choir

Amazing – Ricky Dillard and New G with Tiffany McGhee

Lord, Bless My House – Dorinda Clark-Cole

They Got the Word – Mississippi Mass Choir

Stranger – Donald Lawrence and the Tri-City Singers

I Am God – Donald Lawrence and the Tri-City Singers


What Saith the Lord: Music and Songs (Scripture)

Colossians 3:14-17 (NIV)

And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

2 Chronicles 20: 18-20 (NIV)

Jehoshaphat bowed down with his face to the ground, and all the people of Judah and Jerusalem fell down in worship before the Lord.  Then some Levites from the Kohathites and Korahites stood up and praised the Lord, the God of Israel, with a very loud voice. Early in the morning they left for the Desert of Tekoa.  As they set out, Jehoshaphat stood and said, “Listen to me, Judah and people of Jerusalem! Have faith in the Lord your God and you will be upheld; have faith in his prophets and you will be successful.”

James 5:13 (NIV)

Is anyone among you in trouble?  Let them pray.  Is anyone happy?  Let them sing songs of praise.

Psalm 100 (KJV)

Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands. Serve the Lord with gladness: come before his presence with singing. Know ye that the Lord he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture. Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name. For the Lord is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.

Acts 16:25-26 (KJV)

And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard them. And suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken: and immediately all the doors were opened, and every one’s bands were loosed.

[Emphasis added]


  • ‘Your PRAISE: On all days, to the Almighty is one of the six Potent Pillars of ‘Real’ Christian Living (post).   As I stated in that post:

Praise is [gratitude] for God’s grace and goodness . . . Praise can be expressed in many ways.  Be it in Scripture (from the Bible), Spiritual Songs (‘joyful noise’), Sermons (from the pulpit), or Words (written or spoken), PRAISE goes well beyond your talks with Jesus and Bible verses.


  • If you sing in a Choir, know that the Musical Ministry you’re in plays a vitally-important role within your church.  While the Ministers in the Pulpit hold the key role, those behind the Pulpit (in the Choir Stand) hold a vital secondary role many feel.  I’ve been a member of the Gospel Choir at my church since October 2009.   It’s been one of the most fulfilling experiences of my entire life!
  • If you do not sing in a Choir now, be open to doing so if the Holy Spirit moves you to.

In the prior post in this Series, Christian Praise: Gratitude with Your ‘Spiritual Signature’, I stated:

Like your written signature, your Praise is unique to you.  The Spirituality of your Praise is based in YOUR distinct life stories and personal relationship with Christ.  To not praise the Lord is like giving God an unsigned check.  Real Christians praise Him.

Hopefully, the scripture set forth in this post has allowed you to see the power of Singing and Songs.  The gospel videos and Biblical scripture I’ve shared in this post were provided to help you in your personal Christian devotion.

To God be the Glory.   He’s worthy to be praised.


Photo credit:  Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)/flickr (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Pages

  • Page 2 – Gospel Videos

Christian Praise: Gratitude with Your ‘Spiritual Signature’

  by Greg Silverthorne

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The praise of ‘Real’ Christians is vitally important, allowing them to glorify God and disarm the Devil too.  Having already addressed Worship and Stories, this Series post will explore Praise.  Because your God-exalting gratitude is unique to you, and can only be offered by you, it serves as your Spiritual Signature.

When you Bless the Blessor for His Blessings, you’re Praising the Lord.  The great gospel song which comes to mind when I think of Praise, one which is scripturally well-grounded, is “I Came to Magnify the Lord“.  One of the scriptures which clearly inspired the writing of this song is the 34th Psalm; the 19th Chapter of the Book of Luke is another driver of this anointed song.

The video of the song, by Bishop Clarence McClendon and the Harvest Fire Mega Mass Choir, can be found below.  The lyrics of I Came to Magnify the Lord, partially excerpted below, are powerful prose.  It’s a Gospel Gem that beautifully captures several elements of Praise.  Honestly, if I were deserted on an Island for 90 days, “I Came To Magnify the Lord” would be one of the gospel songs I’d want to listen to while stranded – to encourage me . . . as I waited for the Lord to show up!  Like Paul and Silas in jail (Acts 16, prior post), I’d be singing, magnifying the Lord, and praying.

  • I Came to Magnify the Lord”(Gospel)

Bishop Clarence McClendon and the Harvest Fire Mega Mass Choir

I came to magnify the Lord
Praise His holy name
Lift Jesus higher, lift Jesus Higher
I just came to magnify, I just came to glorify
I just came to praise the Lord . . .

Never will a rock cry out in my place
He’s worthy of all my praise.


  • Psalm 34:1-3, 8 (NKJV)

I will bless the Lord at all times;
His praise shall continually be in my mouth.

My soul shall make its boast in the Lord;
The humble shall hear of it and be glad. 

Oh, magnify the Lord with me,
And let us exalt His name together.

Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good;
Blessed is the man who trusts in Him!



SCRIPTURE (Praise)

Psalm 18:3

I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised; So shall I be saved from my enemies.

Isaiah 43:21

This people I have formed for Myself;
They shall declare My praise.

Psalm 34:1-10

I will bless the Lord at all times;
His praise shall continually be in my mouth.
My soul shall make its boast in the Lord;
The humble shall hear of it and be glad.
Oh, magnify the Lord with me,
And let us exalt His name together.

I sought the Lord, and He heard me,
And delivered me from all my fears.
They looked to Him and were radiant,
And their faces were not ashamed.
This poor man cried out, and the Lord heard him,
And saved him out of all his troubles.
The angel of the Lord encamps all around those who fear Him,
And delivers them.

Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good;
Blessed is the man who trusts in Him!
Oh, fear the Lord, you His saints!
There is no want to those who fear Him.
The young lions lack and suffer hunger;
But those who seek the Lord shall not lack any good thing.

Romans 15:11

And again: “Praise the Lord, all you Gentiles!   Laud Him, all you peoples!”

Psalm 148: 1-4

Praise the Lord!   Praise the Lord from the heavens;
Praise Him in the heights!
Praise Him, all His angels;
Praise Him, all His hosts!
Praise Him, sun and moon;
Praise Him, all you stars of light!
Praise Him, you heavens of heavens,
And you waters above the heavens!

Luke 19:37-40 (See Crying Rocks?)

Psalm 22:3 (He dwells in your Praise)

But You are holy,
Enthroned In the praises of Israel.


Three Purposes of Praise (Dr. Derrick W. Webster)

Praise does 3 key things, namely:

1. “[Praise] glorifies God and keeps our focus on him and his power”.
2. “Praise encourages the believer in the natural, while waiting on the invisible to become visible”.
3. “Praise terrifies the enemy and throws his ranks into confusion”.

This is the way my Tuesday Night Bible Study teacher, Dr. Derrick Wayne Webster, explained the purposes of Praise.  Citing that the Lord dwells in our Praise (Psalm 22:3), Webster (who also serves as Director of Music) expressed that it is through our praise that we’re able to ‘access our ammunition’ and ‘beat up’ the Devil.  Praise glories the Holy One and terrifies the Evil One! It encourages believers as well.  Spiritual warfare without praise is impossible. Impossible.

This lesson coming in the same month (March 2014) as I discovered “My Worship is For Real”, and read Joe Quatrone’s powerful testimony, was a well-timed Godsend.  I began then to strongly sense, nearly a year ago, that Praise is as integral to Real Christian Living as Worship, Prayer, and knowing the word of God.

Crying Rocks?

  • Never ‘let a rock cry out of your place’

Then, as He was now drawing near the descent of the Mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works they had seen, saying: “ ‘Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord!’   Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!”  And some of the Pharisees called to Him from the crowd, “Teacher, rebuke Your disciples.”   But He answered and said to them, “I tell you that if these should keep silent, the stones would immediately cry out.” Luke 19:37-40 (NKJV)

The stones of the wall will cry out,
and the beams of the woodwork will echo it.
Habakkuk 2:11 (NIV)

 


2 Gospel songs (Videos) which capture the power of Praise by Christians:

I Came to Magnify the Lord

Bishop Clarence McClendon and the Harvest Fire Mega Mass Choir


I Will Bless the Lord

Bryon Cage


Ready, Set, Praise

I feel that one’s Praise (link) is one of the six Potent Pillars of Real Christian Living. An abiding Christian should Praise the Lord continuously.  Never ever let a rock cry (Luke 19:40) out of your place!

Trust the Lord enough to P.U.S.H – Praise Until Something Happens (prior post). Know that a “No” from the Lord often means “Not Yet”.   Believe with your whole heart that, even if he doesn’t swiftly change your undesirable situation, he CAN change You in the situation.   Faith that’s never tested isn’t really faith at all.  There’s no testimony without a test, right?

Be prepared to Praise Him In advance (before the storm is over), not just after you’ve been blessed.  Appreciate that the Praise of others is rooted in joy and pain you’ll never fully understand.  Be assured that, with Praise, you can glorify the Lord and terrify the Devil – at the SAME time!  If you’re not magnifying the Lord at every chance, you may be missing some of your best blessings.

Praise: Your Spiritual Signature

Like your written signature, your Praise is unique to you.  The Spirituality of your Praise is based in YOUR distinct life stories and personal relationship with Christ. To not praise the Lord is like giving God an unsigned check.  Real Christians praise Him.  Be it in private, or in public Praise Reports, strive to Praise and Bless the Lord regularly.  Be it in good or bad times, a faithful Christian is a Praising Christian who ‘walks by faith’. Having that faith allows you to endure until ‘all things work together’ (Romans 8). We were made to praise (Isaiah 43:21).

Be mindful that Praise is NOT a spectator sport!

  • If you are on Christ’s Team, if you are a saved child of God, you’ll never be playing alone.  If you Praise the Lord regularly, be ASSURED that you’ll get many ‘assists’ (i.e. blessings) in this zigzagging game we call Life.  Jesus Christ, and many God-directed Angels, will allow you to be ‘more than a conqueror’.   Much more!
  • Lastly, when ‘your season is over’ (i.e. when you die), you will -with God’s grace- be transitioned to a new Team.  As a ‘good and faithful servant’, you’ll be with your Heavenly Father.  He’ll warmly greet you at the gates of Heaven and tell you “Well done”.

Have you been good and faithful?  Have you praised the Lord today?  To put it simply, if Christ is the keeper of your soul, your Praise simply seals the deal! ‘Perfect peace’ and, God willing, eternal salvation will be your Prizes.  What does a real Christian do?  Every chance they get, they praise and pray.  Is your Praise and Worship for real?  Praise, in music and song, will be explored in the next Praise post in this Our Stories, Our Praise, Our Worship Series.

Know the battle’s not yours, it’s the Lord’s.  Never let a rock cry out of your place.  Never, never!  To God be the Glory.  He’s worthy of all your Praise.

   Greg Silverthorne


Photo credit:  Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)/flickr (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)