How do we respond to the works of God? As we look at His creation--the beauty of nature, the complexity of the life He has created, the miracle of life--are we filled with awe? When we see a life changed by His word, by His presence, are we amazed at what He has done? And, when we think about the sacrifice He made, giving His Son, Jesus, as a ransom for our sins, are we filled with wonder that a God so powerful, so holy, and so righteous could really love us that much? All these things should (and do!) stir up awe, amazement, wonder, and fear of the One who has done them. But, what is the appropriate response to God's mighty works?
I believe that the answer to that question is praise. After the initial feelings of awe and wonder--after the "wow!"--should come an outpouring of praise. As I thought about this, I went to His word and found some verses that confirmed it to me.
In Matthew 9:1-8, a paralyzed man was brought to Jesus. When Jesus tells the man to pick up his mat and go home, the man is immediately healed and gets up and walks. The crowd reacts in awe and amazement, but what stood out to me was that their response was to praise God. In Luke 7:11-17, Jesus encounters a large crowd carrying the body of a dead man, the son of a widow. Jesus' heart goes out to the woman and he touches the dead man, who sits up and begins to talk. Again, the crowd of people is filled with awe and amazement and again, their response was to praise God.
I found another example of this in Revelation 15. Here, after the anti-Christ has been defeated, those who have been victorious over him marvel over God's mighty works. Their response? They give Him praise! As I read that passage of Scripture, I also saw another confirmation of the importance of music to God. Before the people begin to praise Him, God gives them instruments--harps. Then they begin to sing the Song of Moses and the Song of the Lamb as they praise God.
Lord, Your creation is amazing. When I sit and look at all You have made, I am awed. When I see Your mighty works and reflect on Your sacrifice for us, I am amazed. Let my response always be to give You the praise You deserve. In Jesus' name. Amen!