In the study of Romans, I encountered the word exalt. Now I have sung songs that say “Exalt the Lord” and know that it had something to do with praising God. It felt wrong to not really know, so I looked it up. It means leaps a lot. I was once at a Christian High School retreat. The students got excited when the Christian rock band played. They started jumping up and down. The principal ordered them to stop. Little did everyone know that they were being biblical, the only ones truly exalting the Lord, and the principal unBiblical.
Can you imagine walking down the street amongst other people and suddenly jump up with a fist bump to the sky? People would think you are crazy. I once was grocery shopping, hopping, and skipping behind the cart. As I bounced out to the car, someone asked me about my joy. As I talked about God, their smile quickly faded and they grumped off. If you have peace with the Lord, flaunt it!
Once, a group of Christian singles and I went white water rafting. The guide, at the start said something about Christian groups being boring, not knowing what we were. I think he thought that because we Christians don’t know how to exalt God, and are staid. Well, he mentioned that toward the end, he sometimes spins the raft. He was about to just go straight down the last stretch, but I pushed him to spin. I got in front, leaned so far over backwards over the inflated sides that my head almost touched the water, and dug my paddle in, hard. He had everyone including himself paddling to spin, but my violent effort caused us to spin rapidly. He said, “I have never spun so fast, I can never say Christian groups are boring again.” Flaunt your joy of the Lord to the highest heavens.
Why can we flaunt it? Because we didn’t earn it! There can be no proud boasting. This is, “I have this great gift! You can have it too!” Remember the lame man Peter healed? Peter said, “Silver and gold have I none, but such as I have, I give to you.” Peter grabs him and “With a leap he stood upright and began to walk; and he entered the temple with them, walking and leaping and praising God. And all the people saw him walking and praising God; and they were taking note of him as being the one who used to sit at the Beautiful Gate of the temple to beg alms, and they were filled with wonder and amazement at what had happened to him.” His exalting caused God’s name to be praised. God does not command us to be staid, but to exalt!