When Praise is a Choice

One of my biggest likes and dislikes on NET is this thing we do called team prayer.

Every day a NET team spends 45 minutes to an hour doing charismatic praise and worship. Now I've been doing this team prayer thing for two years so you'd think I've got it down and know exactly what to do. However, that is not the case because it can be hard to praise the Lord when you don't feel like it. Basically ever since we left to go on the road I've been in a constant state of desolation and honestly, that feeling is hard especially when you need to go and praise the Lord every single day.

For a long time I really felt like a hypocrite being there praising the Lord but never really feeling anything because why should I praise when I don't feel it? This went on for a while until we sat down as a team and talked about team prayer and what it's truly about. What I learned is that praise is so much more powerful when we don't want to do it because in that moment we are truly showing our Lord that we love Him more than our comfort, more than our tiredness, more than our burdens.

This idea of praising when I don't want to really came into play after we had finished two whole days of doing French ministry. After those retreats, I felt mentally and emotionally exhausted and I had a really bad headache. So when we went into team prayer the last thing I wanted to do was stand for forty-five minutes and tell Jesus that He's the best. However, during one song (Set a Fire) it came to the lyric "I want more of You God" and I realized in that moment my littleness and the fact that I actually cannot do this year without God. However by the end of team prayer I really felt like Jesus consoled me in that moment.

My challenge for you is that at the end of the day, today, you take 10 minutes and spend them just praising God. Turn on some praise and worship music and just tell the Lord what's on your heart, good or bad. A way to spontaneously praise is by saying Jesus you are _______________ (eg. kind, loving, the lamb of God) or just speak out loud what's on your heart. Praise and worship isn't just for people on NET or charismatic Christians but it's for all of us. Praise is our response to what the Lord has done in our lives.

Dominique Gougeon-Gagnon, Team 2