It’s true, and I can attest to the fact, that you cannot praise or thank God and feel sad, stressed, worried, anxious or fearful. It’s just impossible. Then why is the suicide rate going up all over the world? Why are these mental health statistics for 2020, so dreadful?
- Approximately 20% of U.S. children and adolescents are affected by mental health disorders during their lifetime. Often, symptoms of anxiety disorders emerge by age 6, behavior disorders by age 11, mood disorders by age 13, and substance use disorders by age 15.
- 15% of high school students have seriously considered suicide, and 7% have attempted to take their own life.
- Mental health disorders among children and adolescents can lead to school failure, alcohol or other drug abuse, family discord, violence, and suicide.
- It is estimated that only about 17% of U.S. adults are considered to be in a state of optimal mental health.
- An estimated 26% of Americans age 18 and older are living with a mental health disorder in any given year, and 46% will have a mental health disorder over the course of their lifetime.
Now, I’m no doctor and this is not medical advice. Nevertheless, I’m going to show you proof in the Bible, that praising God will help you feel better.
I read this story recently…
A missionary who had received very bad news from home, was utterly cast down. Prayer availed nothing to relieve the darkness of his soul. He went to see another missionary, no doubt seeking comfort. There on the wall was a motto-card: “Try Thanksgiving!” He did; and in a moment every shadow was gone, never to return.“The Kneeling Christian”, An Anonymous Christian
Thanksgiving Every Day
As a kid growing up Catholic, besides the 3 required prayers, “Lord’s Prayer”, “Hail Mary” and the “Act of Contrition”, I only remember saying, “Thanks be to God” as part of the ritual of the Mass. I didn’t know what it meant. Certainly, I had no idea that I had to be grateful for anything. And certainly not for the salvation that can only be found through Jesus’ gift of Grace. I only knew that I had to obey the rules of the church and that’s it. How wrong that all is!
Why We Need to Thank God Every Day
Let’s start with the reason we need to Thank and Praise God…
For a child is born to us,Isaiah 9:6-7 NLT
a son is given to us.
The government will rest on his shoulders.
And he will be called:
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
7 His government and its peace
will never end.
He will rule with fairness and justice from the throne of his ancestor David
for all eternity.
The passionate commitment of the Lord of Heaven’s Armies
will make this happen!
Then Jesus told us…
16 “For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. 17 God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.”John 3:16-17 NLT
33 “I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.”John 16:33 NLT
So, let’s recap. The prophet Isaiah prophesied that God would give us a Son, and that He would be called the Prince of Peace. Then, Jesus confirmed that as well as saying that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life! Furthermore, God sent him to SAVE THE WORLD!
Jesus then assures us that we can have PEACE IN HIM. That on earth we will have trouble, problems, trials and sorrows. However, we can “take heart” — other Bible versions translate that as, “good cheer” (NKJV), “be filled with joy” (AMP). In other words — don’t worry, be confident, relax.
If you read through the Psalms you’ll see an obvious pattern. The writers will cry out to God in anger, agony, frustration, even pain, but eventually, praise Him. Moreover, we are told again and again to praise the Lord. Here are a few of my favorites…
3 Trust in the Lord and do good.
Then you will live safely in the land and prosper.
4 Take delight in the Lord,
and he will give you your heart’s desires.
5 Commit everything you do to the Lord.
Trust him, and he will help you.
6 He will make your innocence radiate like the dawn,
and the justice of your cause will shine like the noonday sun.
7 Be still in the presence of the Lord,
and wait patiently for him to act.
Don’t worry about evil people who prosper
or fret about their wicked schemes.
8 Stop being angry!Psalm 37:3-9 NLT
Turn from your rage!
Do not lose your temper—
it only leads to harm.
9 For the wicked will be destroyed,
but those who trust in the Lord will possess the land.
1 Praise the Lord!Psalm 106:1 NLT
Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good!
His faithful love endures forever.
6 Then all of you can join together with one voice, giving praise and glory to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.
11 And yet again,
“Praise the Lord, all you Gentiles.Romans 15:6 and 11 NLT
Praise him, all you people of the earth.”
20 And give thanks for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.Ephesians 5:20 NLT
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. 9 Keep putting into practice all you learned and received from me—everything you heard from me and saw me doing. Then the God of peace will be with you.Philippians 4:8-9 NLT
17 And they said,
“We give thanks to you, Lord God, the Almighty,Revelation 11:17 NLT
the one who is and who always was,
for now you have assumed your great power
and have begun to reign.
Proven by Medical Studies…
Medical studies confirm the link between gratitude and mental health. When test subjects wrote down three good things (Seligman et al., 2005), kept a gratitude journal (Kerr, O’Donovan, & Pepping, 2014), or wrote letters of gratitude to other people (Toepfer et al., 2012) all demonstrated improvements in levels of anxiety, depression, and life satisfaction.
The Bible and the scientific material both attest to the effectiveness of simple gratitude practices. If you want to deepen your level of peace and your relationship with God, gratitude is a great place to start.https://www.theologyofwork.org/the-high-calling/daily-reflection/rewards-gratitude-part-1-enlarged-heart
If you practice gratitude every day, what do you think
the result will be?
REJOICE: PRAY: GIVE THANKS
That is the order, according to the will of God — for you, and for me. Nothing pleases God as our praises — and nothing so blesses the person who prays as the praises he offers!
Thinking back, I never truly learned how to praise God in song until I started attending a Protestant church. The word, “Hallelujah!” actually means “Praise the Lord!” If you search for that phrase in the NLT, you’ll find it 194 times between the Old and New Testaments. This phrase is found in the Old Testament a lot…
Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good!
His faithful love endures forever.
A promise from God, that you can count on, is that when you rejoice, pray and give thanks, darkness, anxiety and fear will flee — you will have peace.
God, thank you for all that you’ve given me. Thank you for your gift of sacrificing you Son on the cross and for taking my sins away forever. I thank you for forgiving me of my sins and I promise to stop sinning. Please give me a grateful heart and a deeper relationship with you. Grant me peace today. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.
Here is one of my favorite praise songs that you can’t help but feel good just singing it…
Soli Deo Gloria — To God Alone Be the Glory!