Have you ever noticed that we humans are always looking for something to praise? Go to any music concert, art exhibit, or sporting event and you will see signs of admiration that acknowledge the unique talents of the performers, artists, or athletes. The crowds cheer, they raise their hands, they sway with the music, or they wear silly looking outfits all meant to identify with and praise those whose talents are on display. This seems to be an attribute of humans that is a healthy, natural state. In fact, people who can’t seem to find and acknowledge good in anything probably are lacking in mental health to some degree.
The great Christian author and theologian, C.S. Lewis, made these observations in an essay titled “A Word About Praising” in the book Reflections On the Psalms:
I think we delight to praise what we enjoy because the praise not merely expresses but completes the enjoyment; it is its appointed consummation…The worthier the object, the more intense this delight would be.
Lewis hypothesizes a situation where the most perfect object or person is within our view. We acknowledge that this thing or person is absolutely flawless and beautiful. We could not help but praise it/him/her, and in doing so we would find the greatest of pleasures. Lewis then makes the obvious extension of this thought to include God.
The Scottish catechism says that ‘man’s chief end is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever.’ But we shall know that these are the same thing. Fully to enjoy is to glorify. In commanding us to glorify Him, God is inviting us to enjoy Him.
God invites, even commands, us to worship Him. This is because he is perfect in holiness, love, purity, wisdom, and power. He is absolutely beautiful in every respect. If we could see this with unclouded eyes, we would automatically respond with uninhibited praise and worship. We would find extreme enjoyment, even bliss in doing so. Let us strive to worship Him with all our hearts, for He is glorious beyond description!
One thing have I asked of the Lord,
that will I seek after:
that I may dwell in the house of the Lord
all the days of my life,
to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord
and to inquire in his temple.
Psalm 27:4 (ESV)