by Pastor Greg Laurie
When Praise Becomes a Sacrifice
“Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name.” (Hebrews 13:15)
There are times when it is a sacrifice to offer praise to God, quite frankly, because we don’t really want to. There are times when we are down or depressed or things aren’t going that well. We don’t really feel like praising the Lord. Yet the Bible is filled with admonition after admonition to give glory and praise and thanks to God. Psalm 106:1 says, “Praise the Lord! Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever.”
Notice that the Bible does not say, “Give thanks to the Lord when you feel good.” Rather, it says, “Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good!” I don’t praise God because I feel like it. I praise God because He is worthy, regardless of what I am going through. Praise can be a sacrifice sometimes. I have found that when, out of obedience, I begin to praise the Lord, the emotion will begin to engage with my act of obedience in time. The point is, I should do it because God tells me to.
In the Gospel of Luke, we find the story of ten men who were miraculously touched by Jesus. Because these men had leprosy, they were the outcasts of their society. Yet Jesus went out of His way to touch them and heal them of this dread disease. Only one, a Samaritan, returned and gave thanks and praise to God. Jesus then asked a provocative question: “Were there not any found who returned to give glory to God except this foreigner?” (Luke 17:18). In many ways, I think He is still asking this question today.
Copyright © 2003 by Harvest Ministries. All rights reserved. Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New King James Version, copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.