I was listening to a sermon the other day, and the preacher (I’m pretty sure it was Bro. T.F. Kenny), said that Abraham declared “God will provide..” (Genesis 22:8) before he ever saw God’s provision. At one of the most dark, scary, uncertain, and agonizing moments anyone could ever experience, Abraham made it known that his God is the God that supplies.
That led me to think about how many times I have waited until after God has supplied a need to give Him the praise for who He already is and what He is going to do. When the ark of the covenant was being brought back to the people of God in 2nd Samuel 6, David and all of those that he led, worshipped and praised God all the way back to Jerusalem. There was a tragedy during the process, but even after that, praise continued. Before the Ark was actually in the place that David had prepared for it, he worshipped and danced with all of his might. Now, that is how you “wait” upon the Lord!
There are going to be times in our walk with God that we will need God to super naturally supply a need. The key is not to wait until God brings it pass to praise, but to praise Him in faith, knowing that He is able to supply all of our needs according to His riches in glory.
But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:19
When we delay our praise, we leave ourselves open to the temptation to complain. The children of Israel were notorious complainers. Instead of praising God for supplying their needs (which in His great mercy, He did over and over again), they complained about how awful their situation was. Instead of crying out in honor of God, they cried out against Him and the man of God.
In the end, they paid the price. The journey took 40 years and some did not reach the promised land because they did not praise God before the provision. This can easily happen to the people of God in this day and age. God may delay fulfilling a promise in order to teach us how to worship in faith and anticipation of what He is going to accomplish. I don’t want to find myself in this situation.
Also, when we refrain from praising until we can see provision, we are open to doubt and unbelief. Even though I referenced Abraham as being an example of praising before the provision, he also fell prey to allowing doubt to creep in. When God did not give them their promised child in the time frame they were expecting, Abraham and Sarah took matters into their own hands and brought another woman into the picture (Genesis 16). This only created problems for the couple, and those problems would last for many generations. We cannot allow doubt to creep in while we wait on the fulfillment of God’s promise.
I love the story of the three Hebrew boys (Daniel 3). These young men were facing certain death if they refused to worship the golden image created by King Nebuchadnezzar. This was their response:
Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, answered and said to the king, O Nebuchadnezzar, we are not careful to answer thee in this matter. If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king. Daniel 3:16-17
Before they saw a way out of their dire situation, they acknowledged the ability of God to provide an escape. Because of their faith and worship of the one true God, they received deliverance not only for themselves, but for all the people in the land.
Then Nebuchadnezzar spake, and said, Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, who hath sent his angel, and delivered his servants that trusted in him, and have changed the king’s word, and yielded their bodies, that they might not serve nor worship any god, except their own God. Therefore I make a decree, That every people, nation, and language, which speak any thing amiss against the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, shall be cut in pieces, and their houses shall be made a dunghill: because there is no other God that can deliver after this sort.Then the king promoted Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, in the province of Babylon. Daniel 3:28-30
No matter who you are, you will face situations where you have a need that only God can fulfill. You may not be facing a fiery furnace. Maybe you have rent that needs to be paid or a tuition bill that you don’t have the finances for. Maybe you are facing a health crisis, needing a job, or you have an emotional need that needs to be fulfilled. Either way, the God of Abraham, David, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego is still able to provide. The only thing He requires of us is faith. If we praise Him before the provision, we will not only see His hand at work, but our faith will be increased.
And if God cares so wonderfully for wildflowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. Why do you have so little faith? Matthew 6:30 NLT
What are you waiting for from God? What promises have been made that need to be fulfilled? Don’t wait until you are on the other side of the trial or the manifestation of the promise to praise God. Praise Him now, because if He said it, He will do it. He was, is and always will be Jehovah-Jireh. Just trust and praise Him for the provision that is to come. It’s already done!
God bless you!!