Remember to Sing
Praise the Lord!
For it is good to sing praises to our God;
For it is pleasant, and praise is beautiful.
The Lord builds up Jerusalem;
He gathers together the outcasts of Israel.
He heals the brokenhearted
And binds up their wounds.
He counts the number of the stars;
He calls them all by name.
Great is our Lord, and mighty in power;
His understanding is infinite.
The Lord lifts up the humble;
He casts the wicked down to the ground.
Sing to the Lord with thanksgiving;
Sing praises on the harp to our God,
Who covers the heavens with clouds,
Who prepares rain for the earth,
Who makes grass to grow on the mountains. - Psalm 147:1-8
Nancy Gustafson, a retired opera singer, was devastated when she visited her mother and observed her decline from dementia. Her mom no longer recognized her and barely spoke. After several monthly visits, Nancy had an idea. She started singing to her. Her mother’s eyes lit up at the musical sounds, and she began singing too—for twenty minutes! Then Nancy’s mom laughed, joking they were “The Gustafson Family Singers!” The dramatic turnaround suggested the power of music, as some therapists conclude, to evoke lost memories. Singing “old favorites” has also been shown to boost mood, reduce falls, lessen visits to the emergency room, and decrease the need for sedative drugs.
More research is underway on a music-memory link. Yet, as the Bible reveals, the joy that comes from singing is a gift from God—and it’s real. “How good it is to sing praises to our God, how pleasant and fitting to praise him!” (Psalm 147:1).
The book of Psalms concludes with five hymns of praise (Psalms 146–150) that begin and end with the refrain Praise the Lord (Hebrew halelû-yāh). In Psalm 147, the psalmist reminds us how much God has loved and cared for us and invites us to worship “[Yahweh] with grateful praise” (v. 7), celebrating His goodness as He draws us to Himself, heals us of our brokenness, sustains us, and strengthens us (vv. 2–3, 6). We’re also to extol His greatness and mighty power in creation (vv. 4–5) and His caring providence for His creatures (vv. 8–9).
Throughout the Scriptures, in fact, God’s people are urged to lift their voices in songs of praise to Him. “Sing to the Lord, for he has done glorious things” (Isaiah 12:5). “He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see and fear the Lord and put their trust in him” (Psalm 40:3). Our singing inspires us but also those who hear it. May we all remember: our God is great and worthy of praise.
The devotional message, “Remember to Sing”, was written by Mrs. Patricia Raybon, with special insight from Mr. K.T. Sim, and appeared in “Our Daily Bread”, , February 18, 2021. Used here with permission from the website.