Over the past few months, I have been pondering Psalm 32:1 “It is a good thing to give thanks unto the Lord and to sing praises unto Thy name…” It is exciting as I come to know more and more the journey God has me on as Leanne, The Urban Hermit. Thoughts as I first began this journey were overwhelming and I was taking a lot of steps into what appeared to be the unknown. (God does not tend to afford us the larger picture.) When overwhelm became a burden, it was time for some changes, which led me to praising God for the journey. It was the journey not the destination which required focus.
I am drawn to a memory of a trip to Disney World Michael and I took with our daughter Chrissy and her family. Our day there was dreary, drizzling rain, few characters, and at times rides closed. It was muggy and disappointing compared to what we had hoped that experience would be. Later that evening as we sat around the dinner table at our condo everyone was eating in silence. Aaron Michael our youngest grandchild spoke up out of the blue and said, “Isn’t God good!” We all began laughing, realizing what had transpired and the whole day and evening was changed. We were awestruck at the wonder of the world through Aaron Michael’s eyes.
As I reflected on that memory I remembered a quote I once saw that showed a stark hallway, with a door at the end, and the words, “Until God opens the next door, praise him in the hallway. However, as I continued my reflecting, I realized the bleakness of the hallway and thought how often I feel as if I live in the hallway in constant anticipation of what’s behind the next door. What Aaron Michael taught me was praising God changes the view in the hallway. Praising God helps me stay focused on the journey. Praising God provides me the energy to continue to walk toward the door, not just sit and wait for it to open. There are opportunities on the journey that are missed when the focus is on door. There are signposts that I don’t notice when the focus in on door. There are joys that are overlooked when the focus in on door.
Praising God daily for my journey at each stage or point on the journey brings greater joy to the journey. I don’t always find this easy, especially when I awake with a migraine, I learn that a friend’s family is going through troubled times, I learn someone has been diagnosed with Stage IV cancer, but then I remember once again the focus is on the journey not the door. God blesses us no matter where our journeys take us. When I have a migraine, I am blessed with rest and renewal. When I hear about troubled times, I am blessed with the opportunity to pray. When someone is diagnosed, I am blessed with knowing the value of friendship and life and given the opportunity to embrace that as well as the person.
Praising God is a way of looking at life and our journeys differently. Praising God brings joy to our hearts. Praising God helps us to know this life is not all there is. Praising God changes our focus from the problem to the solution which is our Papa, God. Today I am blessing all of you on your journey today.