During this season of Lent our natural focus is on repenting of our sins and finding healing from all that still separates us from receiving the fullness of God’s love. Thus, like the repentant tax collector, we feel our unworthiness and cry out with him: O God, be merciful to me a sinner. Accordingly, it might seem strange to hear Jesus speaking of the praise that we should seek—not from one another, but from God. Does God ever actually praise us? Isn’t he more likely to condemn us for our sins? We know God praised Job, but then he was a very special person and very unlike us. Well, despite being sinners there is one thing that God values and praises: Namely, our striving and battling to reject sin, and open our hearts to his saving love. In the midst of this battle, we are often only aware of the wounds we have sustained, and of our many falls. God, however, sees our struggles and our efforts; and it is when we refuse to remain fallen, but get up again and resume the struggle, that he finds grounds for praise and esteem. Nevertheless, this praise should not cause us to slacken our efforts, but encourage an even firmer resolve to persevere on the path of conversion and salvation—so that transformed into Christ, we may give glory to the God who, in praising us, imbues us with glory.