I Love…….the Doxology


“Praise God from whom all blessings flow,
Praise Him all creatures here below.
Praise Him above, ye heavenly hosts,
Praise Father, Son and Holy Ghost.”

From the age of nine my family attended a very traditional Presbyterian Church. Each Sunday the order of service at the church was exactly the same, so every Sunday the Doxology was sung. The chords would begin and we would automatically begin to sing it. I think we sang it in the churches we attended before that, too. It has been part of my life for a very long time.

I’m not really a big traditionalist when it comes to church. There is a side of me that is probably a bit repulsed by it. For me too much tradition means my faith becomes an exercise of going through motions. Something I do without thought, without much meaning. Part of my brain shuts off and while I may look to be in worship I am really doing things like planning my week or thinking about what I need to get at the grocery store. Lazy and meaningless worship. Worship not worthy of the God I serve.

Knowing this about myself, I tend to seek out services that are a bit more informal. Worship that keeps me on my toes a bit. Surprises me. Doesn’t let me fall into complacency. Makes me think. Makes me get personal. Convicts me and challenges me.

So…..the Doxology. Even though it was sung often, for some reason I never fell into complacency when singing it. The words seem quite simple, but there is also a wonderful complexity to it. I think the pictures it creates in my brain are quite beautiful. Each line seems to awaken something special and make me concentrate on worship.

“Praise God from whom all blessings flow” – A reminder of who God is. That all in life that is good comes from Him. And that blessings do flow….they do not trickle out in a miserly fashion, but instead flow across us and around us like the rivers and the heavens. Endless.

“Praise Him all creatures here below.” – Yes, we humans praise God. All of us are welcome at the feet of God.  But we’re not alone. All of the other creatures we share the earth with – the dogs, the cats, livestock, fish, and insects…..in their own way they also praise God. Maybe the sound of the cicada is not a meaningless song, but a special song of praise. Maybe the bark of a dog, or a whimper, is it crying out to our God. Maybe the light of the lightening bug is a special signal of the light of God that brightens the darkness. We’re different, but yet we have a common purpose. We all were created to praise God.

“Praise Him above, ye heavenly hosts” – Joining us in our worship are not only those of the earth, but also those in the heavens. The angels joining in our grateful chorus. Our voices joining those in heaven, loud and bold and with meaning.

“Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.” We, the children, praise God the Father. Who cares for us and teaches us, provides for us and grows us. We praise Jesus, the son. Our brother. Our protector, our defender. And we praise the Holy Ghost….the spirit that resides in us. The best friend that walks beside us and empowers and convicts us. That prompts us as to how God wants us to live.

The beauty captivates me. I guess that is why it has always been special. Simply and beautifully, it calls my soul to worship. Simply and beautifully, it acknowledges the God I serve. Simply and beautifully, it says so much about who God is…..and who I am.

“Praise God from whom all blessings flow,
Praise Him all creatures here below.
Praise Him above, ye heavenly hosts,
Praise Father, Son and Holy Ghost.”

I love the Doxology….because it allows me to heed a call of worship and sing in good company, celebrating our great Creator.

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