1Samuel 2:30 “… for them that honour me I will honour …” (KJV)
Just imagine it. You have the opportunity to present your talents to the greatest and most influential person you have ever met. Something you have dreamed of for a lifetime. Think of what this could lead to. Imagine what that person could do for you!
I think of a patient of mine who I once evaluated for Physical Therapy. Toward the treatment booth she walked, head bowed low, her hand clutched the medical mask that hid her nose and mouth. “Are you sick?” I inquired.
“No, I just ….” She did not need to explain any further. It became evident to me as she timidly removed the mask, obviously not comfortable with strangers seeing her. Even still, I could see that she was a beautiful woman.
As she explained her condition, I noticed the lifeless right side of her paralyzed face pulled grimly to the left. Tears spilled from her hopeless eyes, but only the left eye could blink them back as they spilled down over her contorted face.
She explained to me that she was a singer and speaker in Christian ministry. Now she was suddenly struck with a condition that left her unable to sing and barely able to talk. Struggling to speak, she explained to me that she was scheduled to sing at an upcoming social event for a famous person, who she had recently met. Their paths had crossed “by chance” when she sang at a service that they both attended. He was impressed with her voice and invited her to sing for a special onetime event that he was hosting. Here she would have the privilege of being noticed by many rich and influential people--ones who had power to skyrocket her career.
By the looks of things, it appeared that she would not be singing any time soon--not for him, or for anyone else. There was no human way of knowing when or if she would ever regain the function of her face. It seemed that she had a fleeting opportunity.
“Will you pray for me?” she asked. I knew that in this life time she may never get her big break singing in front of the audience of famous people who could “discover her.” I prayed without speaking, “Lord, how can I encourage her?” I began to think about a song that I was in the process of writing. It was about wondering what it will be like to do music in heaven, singing to Jesus himself.
“You know, some day we will be in Heaven and get to sing to the most wonderful and powerful person of all,” I said. We began to talk and fellowship together. I mentioned the power of praise and the miracle that God did for the Apostle Paul in the Philippian jail when he, in adverse circumstances, offered the sacrifice of praise. I talked about how God blesses and helps us to cope when we honor him by praising him in all things--when we make that sacrifice of praise. I agreed with her about how hard it is to praise God in the midst of tragedy. But I reminded her of how much she could honor God, if by faith she was willing to praise Him for allowing this in her life. If she would honor Him now, just think how He would honor her in the future.
In Heaven, we will know as we are known. It seems that there will be no more need to trust Him by faith. There will be no more opportunities to please Him by trusting in Him during adverse times. It is only now, in this life of flesh and blood, that we have the unique and fleeting chance to honor God by faith--to offer the sacrifice of praise in spite of what appears to be tragic circumstances. It is this loving offering of faith to God that honors Him. And we know that the scripture teaches that those who honor God will be honored by Him.
Recognize that your difficult situation may be a limited, one-time offer to please God by trusting Him, even when things look bad. If you do, be assured He will honor you. Make the sacrifice of praise to the One who has all might--to the One who has the power to honor you in this life and the next by giving you gifts exceeding beyond what you can even imagine. Do not miss out on your fleeting opportunity.
What about you? Have you offered a sacrifice of praise? How did it change things for you?