5 Minute Read

Today’s Bible Reading:

Numbers 2:1-3:51
Mark 11:27-12:17
Psalm 47:1-9
Proverbs 10:24-25

Today’s Bible Verse(s):

Psalm 47:1-2 (NLT): “Come, everyone! Clap your hands! Shout to God with joyful praise! For the LORD Most High is awesome. He is the great King of all the earth.”

Reflections on Today’s Bible Verse(s):

Life is tough. For some, it can be incredibly tough.

Yet, God does not get glory when His children walk around with discouragement written all over their faces. While we should never plaster fake smiles on our faces, we should strive to think in such a way that our smiles come naturally.

In our Bible reading today, the Psalmist calls us to “clap (our) hands and shout to the Lord with joyful praise.” In other words, we aren’t called to go through some lifeless religious ritual – we are to enjoy Him! This joy must come from a heart that is full to overflowing!

There is much superficiality in Christianity these days. People plaster a smile on their faces and speak of how blessed they are. Yet, all the while, their heart is aching and empty.

So, what is the basis for clapping and shouting for joy? How can these actions be filled with genuine substance?

Believe the truth of Psalm 47:2 (NLT): “For the LORD Most High is awesome. He is the great King of all the earth.”

When we spend time reflecting on God’s character and works and conclude that He is absolutely wonderful, our attitude will naturally flow. When we reflect on the fact that our Heavenly Father rules as the sovereign King over the earth, a positive attitude and a smile will be the most obvious response.

God doesn’t merely want our religious activity. If we go through the motions and there is no joyful heart that drives those actions, we are no better than the hypocritical Pharisees. God wants us to demonstrate that we are people of joy – but He wants it to come from our heart.

And, as we observe in Psalm 47:1-2, a change in action and heart always starts in our mind. We must think about the right things. So, be very careful what you allow your mind to dwell upon today:

Philippians 4:8 “And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.”

Matt Ellis is the pastor of First Baptist Church in Polk City, Florida (fbcpolkcity.com). His latest book is God’s Grace in the Real World. Connect with him on FacebookTwitter, or LinkedIn.

Photo by Noah Silliman on Unsplash