In our culture today, feelings are often overemphasized and given too much authority. When Christians indulge in this exaltation of emotions, it can affect our spiritual life, especially our worship of God. As C. S. Lewis wrote, feelings may come and go, but “obedience is the key to all doors.” With this in mind, we must remember to praise God even when we do not feel like giving Him praise. Our feelings must not dictate our actions. Praise is a call for Christians to act. If we take the first step towards praise, our feelings will follow. God desires His people to recognize, celebrate, and express His value to Him through their praise in obedience.
Praise is the visible and vocal celebration of who God is, the declaration of what He has done, and the expression of what we trust Him to do. Praise should be entirely God-focused. Praise presents a unique opportunity for us to minister to God’s heart; we shouldn’t take that lightly. We can often be enthusiastic about expressing praise for our favorite sports teams, favorite events, and best accomplishments. Still, we can be hesitant to express our praise to God. Since no one has done what God has done, our great King deserves the greatest praise.
Our praise is expressed through joyful service and singing. We should serve God joyfully because we know who He is. In song, we express great thoughts and statements about God to communicate His value. We should approach praise with an attitude of submission, knowing that we are entirely dependent on Him for all we are and all we have. Praise calls us to recognize God’s person, power, and provision. He alone is God, and we need His power to work in our lives. We need to remind ourselves that all the good things in life have been provided by God. When we have this view of God, praise comes easily. Because God indwells the praise of His people, we receive an added benefit: The more we praise, the more of God we experience.
- How do people celebrate and praise their favorite sports teams? What otherworldly things do people praise?
- What are examples of songs written to praise someone or something?
Let’s Get Personal
- What obstacles keep people from praising God? What has kept you from praising God?
- Where has your praise been lacking? What might cause people’s praise to be less God-focused?
- How have you experienced God through praise? How do you need to approach praise differently to experience more of God?
Take the Next Step
- How can you joyfully serve this week to celebrate God’s value to you?
- How has God demonstrated His power and provision in your life? This week, how can you give God praise both publicly and privately for what He has done?
- Want to go deeper? Take time to look at the following passages: Psalm 100:1-5; Psalm 145:1-21; Psalm 150:1-6; Revelation 4:10-11; John 1:20-21; Psalm 34:1-3; Psalm 113:3; Psalm 95:1-3; Deuteronomy 28:45-48; Psalm 107:1; Psalm 29:2; Psalm 66:4; Psalm 7:17; Habakkuk 3:16-19; 2 Chronicles 20:1-24; 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18; Philippians 4:4-6; 2 Chronicles 5:13-14; Hebrews 13:15; Psalm 22:3; Psalm 50:23; Psalm 149:6-9; Acts 13:1-2; Ephesians 1:6.
Renew Your Mind
“Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise.
Give thanks to Him, bless His name.”