When I’m walking through a hard season in my life, facing battles and trials of all kinds, offering God a sacrifice of praise isn’t usually the first thought on my mind. In fact, my prayers are often focused on my needs, asking God for help.
While we’re told that God hears our prayers and will deliver us from our troubles (Psalm 34:17), we’re also told we should praise and glorify God at all times, even in our times of greatest trials (Psalm 34:1).
So how do I offer God a sacrifice of praise, even in those hard times when I don’t feel like it?
What is a Sacrifice of Praise?
“Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise – the fruit of lips that openly profess his name. And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased.”Hebrews 13:15-16 (NIV)
A sacrifice is an offering to God, a giving of our best to the One whom we love and serve. In the Old Testament, God instructed his people to make burnt offerings of unblemished animals and to bring the first fruits of their labors. The idea was to bring something significant before God to atone for your sins or to give thanks.
Jesus became the “paschal Lamb,” serving as the all-atoning sacrifice for us, but God still calls us to offer our hearts to him. While we no longer need to bring physical offerings to God as in Old Testament days, God still asks for our praise and obedience as “living sacrifices” to him.
Praise is one kind of offering we bring to God, giving him the best of our heart and soul. It’s a way to give God our full focus and acknowledge he is the One we will follow and obey.
Why Offer a Sacrifice of Praise?
God says he will answer the prayers of those who worship and obey him. While he always hears your prayers, he desires most for you to step closer and seek a relationship with him. That relationship is developed when we focus on who God is and praise him.
Praising God keeps our eyes fixed on him,
Go deeper in this devotional on Psalm 34: Why Praise God in the Storm.
How to Offer God a Sacrifice of Praise
Psalm 34 gives us instruction on how we should be praising God.
1) Praise Continually
“I will praise the Lord at all times.”Psalm 34:1 (NLT)
Praise God through all times, the good and the bad. Praise him even when you don’t feel like it. Make praise a constant part of your prayers every day.
2) Praise Openly
“I will constantly speak his praises.”Psalm 34:1 (NLT)
Don’t just praise God in private and then go out and speak words of complaint, blame, or despair. Let your praise so fill your heart that it spills out into your conversations. Praise God publicly and openly, even as you talk about the trials you’re facing.
3) Praise Heartily
“I will boast only in the Lord.”Psalm 34:2 (NLT)
Praise with all your heart and all your soul. Don’t just give lip service to your praise, reading a prayer or saying some words of praise. Let it permeate your soul so that you are praising with sincerity. Give all the praise to God, giving him the credit for everything. Don’t just praise God on one side and then on the other give glory to yourself, your solutions, or
How to Praise God When You Don’t Feel Like It
It’s easier to praise God when life is going well, but how do you praise God on those days you don’t feel like it? How do you raise a hallelujah when life is hard?
Praise is a sacrifice. It takes intention to give God your praise, so decide to turn your heart to praise.
- Find one thing in your day to give thanks
aboutand start there.
- Play a worship song. Allow the music to fill your heart. Play the song on repeat until you can join in to sing and worship.
- Open your Bible and pray from the Psalms. Choose a Psalm of praise and use it as your prayer.
- Instead of praying about your needs, pray a prayer of praise. Use a pre-written one, if you need help finding the words. (Get started with these 5 prayers of praise to fight your battles.)
How Will You Offer God a Sacrifice of Praise?
So, how are you offering God a sacrifice of praise?
Are you praising God every day, even when life is hard and you don’t feel like it?
Are you turning to praise, even in the midst of your greatest trials?
Are you speaking his praises aloud, or are your words filled with despair, worry, blame, defeat, negativity? How can you fill your heart with praise for God so that those words of praise spill out into your conversations?
Surrounded – 14-Day Devotional to Fight Your Battles with Praise
Do you feel surrounded by the battles of life?
Fight back with a sacrifice of praise, knowing God is by your side through whatever you’re fighting.
In this devotional, you’ll explore how God is in fighting for you and why praising God is your best weapon in the battle.
As a bonus, you’ll get a set of printable prayer and scripture cards to help you find words of praise through the battle.