As Americans, we live in a culture where someone who is “one of us” can rise up to be great. As children are taught about our government, they are reminded that even a poor child like Abraham Lincoln could grow up to be President. As a result, we live with the mentality that our rulers are relatively accessible.
That heritage is fantastic, but because of it we sometimes miss the significance of references to royalty and kingship. We have to stop and put ourselves in the mentality of a monarchy in order to truly grasp what it means to serve a king.
Why is this important? Because as Christians we serve a King. The King. And because we are so used to our system of government, we sometimes miss just how incredible our relationship with that King is.
To exemplify this, consider this verse from Psalms:
But let the righteous be glad; let them exult before God; yes, let them rejoice with gladness. Psalm 68:3
Did you catch it? Let me show you again:
But LET the righteous be glad; let them exult before God; yes, LET them rejoice with gladness. Psalm 68:3
Now do you see it?
David is asking that the righteous be allowed to be glad, exult before God, and rejoice. He recognizes that God’s majesty is too great for man’s praise. Nothing we do comes close to being worthy of our King. Our thanks is far to small. Our rejoicing is too limited. Our gladness can never be great enough. God must condescend to allow our praise and thanksgiving to be sufficient.
And He does! Willingly! Intentionally, in fact! David knew he could make this petition because he sought the heart of a relational God. We know we can boldly approach the throne because God sacrificed His one and only Son that we might have direct communion with Him.
But we must never, ever, ever forget that we can approach that throne because God condescends to us. He permanently extends His scepter to us, allowing our insignificant and insufficient efforts to bring Him joy. He permits us to praise Him!
If I truly fill my mind with the realization that He not only commands my praise but permits it, I cannot help but lift my voice, my heart, and my life up to Him. I am reminded just how small I am. Yet I am also reminded of the incredible reality that He loves me, no matter how small I am. What a tremendous reality! What an overwhelming thought!
You are allowed to praise today. Your tiny offering of thanks is not only accepted but cherished by the King of kings. Your gladness is treasured by the Lord of lords. What a blessing!