Read: Psalm 98:1-9
“O come, let us sing unto the Lord: let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation. Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms.”
– Psalms 95:1-2 KJV
In my mind, no store can carry any merchandise more abominable than things that sing. It is not that I have any objection to singing. In and of itself, music can be quite beautiful. However, when a singing item is placed on a display shelf, it naturally attracts the attention of everyone who passes. The result is that the employees who work in the department in which the singing merchandise has been placed are forced to listen to the same song or refrain all day, every day for months on end until they repeat it in their sleep.
My list of despicable singing things includes the caroling trout, “La Cucaracha” playing chip and dip bowls, mooing cookie jars and the barn cookie jar that plays the “Green Acres” theme song. (I also feel a strong loathing for jack-in-the-boxes and talking action figures.)
There was one piece of singing merchandise, however, that I took a particular liking to: a line of stuffed, caroling farm animals. When squeezed, these creatures begin to sing in their native tongue. That is to say, when I squeeze the cow, he moos “Deck the Halls” and if I squeeze the dog, he barks “Jingle Bells.” Finding these characters particularly amusing, I was forced to consider why I felt such distaste for every other singing product in the store. I was surprised to discover that it wasn’t the singing, or the songs, but the mechanical sound of the voices that turned something cheerful and beautiful into raucous noise.
As Christians, we too run the risk of our songs becoming little more than noise. We sing the same hymn or praise chorus so many times that it has become mechanical. Becoming focused on our actions, we forget the meaning that our they ought to embody. We forget to fill our praises with the joy which God has given us. And, instead of our songs being beautiful and melodic, a joy to God, they become worthless babble.
As we enter the New Year, let’s take a moment to commit to purposeful praise – the kind which shows both God and others the gratitude we feel.
Challenge: Make a list of the ways that God has blessed you. Then, let your songs be filled with the joy of Thanksgiving!