Practicing Gratitude - Praise God (Even when it makes no sense to do so....)
"Praise God." --Crazy Mr. Parker
A few years ago my sister told me about a sermon she had heard about Crazy Mr. Parker. Crazy Mr. Parker went around praising God all the time, no matter what. If you told him someone was sick he would say, "Praise God!" If you told him someone had just died he would say, "Praise God!" Good news, bad news, it didn't matter, Mr. Parker's response was always the same, "Praise God!"
We decided that this would be a great spiritual practice, to walk around in the world praising God no matter what. If you stub your toe, praise God. If you lose your wallet, praise God. If you miss the bus, praise God.
This seems more than a little bit crazy of the face of it, but the truth is we really have no idea what is a blessing and what is a curse in the moment that it happens. As in the Buddhist tale, "Maybe," we often do not know until much later that what looked like bad luck was actually a blessing in disguise.
So give this a try this week. Praise God no matter what and see how it feels. I'll let you know how it goes for me too.
Here are some of the things I am praising God for today:
1) I missed church on Sunday and had breakfast in bed with my younger son instead.
2) I saw something on Facebook that made me angry and I held my tongue (and my fingers).
3) Our Direct TV was not working last evening and I had to call customer service. The person on the other end of the line was very patient and thorough and stayed on the line with me quite awhile until the problem was fixed.
[I took this photograph in Hawaii on the island of Maui. Like saying "Praise God," when bad things happen it doesn't seem to make any sense, but you just never know....]