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     Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord; let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation. Let us come before him with thanksgiving and extol him with music and song. For the Lord is the great God,    the great King above all gods. In his hand are the depths of the earth, and the mountain peaks belong to him. The sea is his, for he made it, and his hands formed the dry land. Come, let us bow down in worship, let us kneel before the Lord our Maker. Psalm 95:1-6
     Dear heavenly Father, there is no other god like you—none so awe-fueling and praise-worthy, absolutely transcendent and imminently engaged, augustly mighty and overflowing with compassion. We praise you for the great works of your hands which are the overflow of the boundless joy of your heart. How can we keep from singing, as we ponder the magnificence of creation?
     You have made all things for your glory and for our joy. We praise you for the soul-centering sound of waves crashing on the shorelines of the world; the poly-chromatic splendor of every sunrise and sunset—painted on the living canvas of the horizon; the instinctive “Aahhh” we offer after savoring the first cup of coffee and the last bite of a favorite dessert.
     We praise you for the pan-emotive gift of music—the voice of our hearts. For grand symphonies, which take the chaos of random notes and create auditory beauty and harmonic cosmos; for the bluegrass smorgasbord of fiddle, flat-top guitar, dobro, mandolin and harmonica—calculated to get us on the dance floor of life; for the gut-wrenching, story-telling, angst-releasing expression of “the blues”; for the deep roots and improvisational wings of jazz—giving expression to our love for order and our delight in spontaneity.
     And, Father, how can we keep from shouting as we reflect on the wonders of our salvation? How appropriate that your Word reveals our redemption as unsearchable riches (Eph. 3:8) and a love beyond knowing (Eph. 3:18-19). Because of what you have done for us in Jesus, we are fully and eternally accepted in the Beloved. We cannot be more loved than we are today and we will never be loved less. The saints in heaven are more happy than we are, but they are not more secure.
     Every tear we shed will be redeemed and wiped away; even sin we have committed, or will commit, has already been forgiven and will never be remembered against us; every heartache, heartbreak and hiccup in life will be redeemed.
     Death has already died and eternal life has already begun; the evil one has already been defeated and all evil will be terminally eradicated; already your kingdom has come and, most assuredly, it will come in beatific fullness.
     Father, we want to kneel before you and dance before you, simultaneously! Is that possible? We want to shout to the Rock of our salvation, and shut up and be still in utter silence—so great is Jesus’ glory and grace. You have already made our hearts glad, but with only 2% of the joy we will experience forever. Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Hallelujah! We love being loved by you, more than anything else we could hope or imagine. So very Amen we pray, in Jesus’ exalted and most glorious name.

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Scotty Smith

Scotty Smith is the founding pastor of Christ Community Church in Franklin, Tennessee. You can follow him on Twitter.

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