UPDATED Today’s AMI QT Devotional, provided by Pastor Ryun Chang (AMI Teaching Pastor), was first posted on January 23, 2013.
Devotional Thought for This Morning
O Lord, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth! I will praise you, O Lord, with all my heart. 1 I will tell of all your wonders. 2 I will be glad and rejoice in you; I will sing praise to your name, O Most High.
Did David win a lottery? He is so exuberant here! No, while he certainly had his share of good days (e.g., victories on the battlefield), his bad days—mostly due to his own faults (adultery, unwise parenting)—sometimes overshadowed them. Yet the LORD never ceased to love him, continuing to uphold the covenantal promise made to David. For that, the king was very grateful and expressed that gratitude through his many psalms. David understood grace, that is to say, he experienced a spiritual reality in which “where sin increased, grace increased all the more” (Rom. 5:20). That inspired him to worship the LORD in exuberance.
Many things in our lives justify our complaints! What are some of yours? How long is your list? Now, view them in light of the richness of God’s grace and mercy in Christ, and begin praising Him. Try!
Prayer: God, I often complain about how people treat me and all the things that I don’t have. But this morning, I want to praise You with all my heart because I see that Christ is greater than all of my problems. LORD, I thank You for Your amazing grace. Amen
Bible Reading for Today: Ephesians 2
Lunch Break Study
Read Ephesians 5:18-19: “Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit. Speak to one another with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord.”
Questions to Consider
- What is one thing that we do that keeps us from making music in our heart to the Lord? What does “drunk on wine” mean?
- When Paul and Silas were imprisoned unjustly in Philippi, they, instead of pouting, worshiped the Lord (Acts 16:16-25; Phil. 3:10). What is so refreshing about that?
- What are the practical benefits of praising God (Ps. 63:4-8)?
- In the Greek world, one influential god was Dionysus who was known as the god of wine and madness. Thus, here Paul meant literal intoxication from drinking too much wine as well as being greatly influenced by dominant secular values. Those who find themselves in such a compromised spiritual state will not find praising God to be important, beneficial, or necessary.
- Paul and Silas had every reason to complain (“Thanks a lot, God”) since they were put in prison for having done good (liberating a demonized girl) but instead of pouting they praised God! Where did that mindset come from? According to Phil. 3:10, Paul saw that as an opportunity to share in the sufferings of Christ.
- According to David, our “soul will be satisfied” and feel nearer to Him. (“My soul clings to you.”) I am sure praise is not the first thing that we think of when unpleasant things happen, but let’s try that the next time we find ourselves complaining. Sad musicians make good music that uplifts people; maybe our praises will do the same for us.
As you look back today, were you aware of God’s presence? Too busy to notice Him? In view of David’s remark, “I will tell of all your wonders,” jot down some wonderful things that God has done for you and thank Him for them.