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The Practice of Praise

A Supernatural Response

2 Chronicles 20:1-30

When trouble or pain comes our way, we can choose to react naturally or supernaturally. Praising the Lord in times like these may seem illogical, but it’s extremely powerful. Praise affects our outlook and faith, opens the door for God to do great things, and influences other people. Scripture offers two wonderful examples of men who chose to respond supernaturally in times of difficulty.

A Supernatural Response to Trouble: 2 Chronicles 20:1-30

  • When King Jehoshaphat heard that three massive armies were about to attack, fear motivated him to seek the Lord (vv. 1-4).
  • His prayer began with praise, which shifted his focus from the magnitude of his problem to the greatness of God (vv. 5-7).
  • After making his petitions and receiving an answer through the prophet Jahaziel, Jehoshaphat—together with the people of Judah—exalted and worshiped the Lord (vv. 18-19).
  • The king’s upward focus had so increased his trust in God that he approached the battle, not with soldiers, but with a choir leading the way (vv. 20-21).
  • When they began singing praises, the Lord intervened by routing their enemies (vv. 22-25).
  • The people reacted with gratitude and worship to the great deliverance (vv. 26-28).
  • Their supernatural response resulted in peace and rest for them and reverence for God from the surrounding nations (vv. 29-30).

A Supernatural Response to Pain: Acts 16:16-34

  • When Paul and Silas experienced injustice and mistreatment, they sang praises to God in the midst of their suffering (vv. 19-25).
  • Such unusual behavior opened the ears of the unbelieving prisoners (v. 25).
  • The Lord intervened both tangibly and spiritually—opening the prison door and the jailer’s heart (vv. 26-32).
  • As a result of Paul and Silas’s supernatural reaction, an entire household came to know the Savior (vv. 33-34).

Questions for Reflection

  1. How do you normally respond to trouble or suffering? Which attributes or works of God can you focus on in praise to help you through your next difficult experience?
  2. Have you ever chosen to extol the Father when you didn’t feel like it? How would focusing on the Lord instead of your situation change your perspective? Your faith? Your hope? Your witness?

(Copyright 2011 In Touch Ministries, Inc. All rights reserved. www.intouch.org. In Touch grants permission to print for personal use only.)