Praise in the Storms…
After the Last Supper, Jesus and the Apostles sang hymns of thankfulness:
Then, after singing a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives. -Mark 14:26, NAB
The hymns were a part of tradition. After finishing the Passover meal, Jews sang hymns to God, a thanksgiving offering for having been protected during the Passover. This one tiny verse, that we often glaze over, has a couple of important messages.
The first message is that Christ did not completely set aside Jewish customs. As He had said, He did not come to abolish the Law but to fulfill it. So, by singing these hymns, and celebrating the Passover in the first place, Jesus upheld Jewish traditions, even in His last days.
This act shows that God was not breaking His ties with the Jewish people, He was renewing His relationship with them in the New Covenant, but this time, it extended beyond the Jews to the whole world – a significant even in salvation history. God’s love for the Jews, and the special place He has in His heart for them, did not end with Jesus.
The second message is that Christ and the Apostles, shortly after speaking about His coming death, chose to sing in thanksgiving anyway. They knew that rough times were ahead, but they decided to praise God in the storms regardless.
It’s easy to love God and praise Him when things are going well. It is much more difficult when we face trials in life. Imagine staring death in the face yet still finding the courage to praise God and fully accept His will.
Do we have the courage to praise God in the storms? Life will bring its share of difficulties, and it may cause us to waiver in faith. Despite our waivering, God will always stand firm. He will always be there to love and protect us. From the song “Praise You in This Storm” by Casting Crowns:
And I’ll praise You in this storm,
And I will lift my hands,
For You are who You are,
No matter where I am,
And every tear I’ve cried,
You hold in Your hand,
You never left my side,
And though my heart is torn,
I will praise You in this storm.