Focus your attention on greatness!
Praising God serves both to honor him and to focus our attention on his greatness. As sinful people, we tend to focus on ourselves and our problems, and lose a biblical perspective. But as God says in Isaiah, “…my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways.” Praising God realigns our perspective and helps to conform our thoughts to his thoughts.
Joy differs from praise but is closely related to it. As Jay Adams says,”Joy is a deep-seated attitude of confidence that grows out of dependence on God.”… Thus praise is an action, joy is an attitude. Contemplation of God’s sovereign working in history and in our lives produces in us a glad, fervent affirmation that all his works are right and true.
Thus we can sing with the psalmist:
Sing joyfully to the Lord, you righteous;
it is fitting for the upright to praise him.
Praise the Lord with the harp;
make music to him on the ten-stringed lyre.
Sing to him a new song;
play skillfully, and shout for joy.
For the word of the Lord is right and true;
he is faithful in all he does.
The Lord loves righteousness and justice;
the earth is full of his unfailing love.
—Ruth Younts, unpublished manuscript 1992.