Some days, it’s so easy to praise and worship! It doesn’t feel like a sacrifice at all! On Some days, it’s almost as if you can feel that fire shut up in your bones, and the only way to survive another single minute is to sing or dance or pray or share that message of Good News to someone who so desperately needs it.
Some days, praising seems like it’s really what we were made to do. But some days, it feels the farthest thing from our minds.
On those days when it seems like you have a void inside, it doesn’t mean the Spirit has left you. There are times when the flesh simply doesn’t go in the same direction as the Spirit. But hear me: that doesn’t mean you’ve been deserted!
When the Spirit is Willing, but…
Even Jesus knew this is how it would be sometimes. Just take a look at the following verse…
The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.Matthew 26:41, KJV
Jesus had taken Peter and two other with Him to the garden of Gethsemane. He was, verse 37 of this same chapter says, “sorrowful and very heavy”.
We would describe it, probably, as severely depressed. He told them “My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death:” (vs. 38). We know this wasn’t part of the God nature. No, this was just another part of his flesh nature that would allow him to be tempted “in all points” as we are!
Paul explains it best…
For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.Hebrews 4:15, KJV
When we go through something, and we feel like there’s no one who understands us, we can find solace in this verse. He knows our sufferings. He knows what makes us anxious. If we fell alone, it’s only because we have really paid attention to the Word.
The Sacrifice of Praise
When we don’t exactly feel like praising, it could be that that’s exactly when we SHOULD pray! The Bible mentions a “sacrifice of praise” more than once.
And they shall come from the cities of Judah, and from the places about Jerusalem, and from the land of Benjamin, and from the plain, and from the mountains, and from the south, bringing burnt offering, and sacrifices, and meat offerings, and incense, and bringing sacrifices of praise, unto the house of the Lord.Jeremiah 17:26
Notice that here, it talks of the sacrifices of praise being brought into the “house of the Lord”… in church!
Now if any of you are like me, there’s been a time or two that I have gone into the church house, sat down and simply didn’t even attempt to praise. I didn’t feel like it. I might have been mad at a family member or feeling hateful for one reason or another. Or I might have just been tired.
Either way, I did not offer the sacrifice of praise. Thinking back on it, I have to wonder how I would explain myself if the Lord happened to split the Eastern skies at that time! It really made me rethink the situation!
More on the Sacrifice
The voice of joy, and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom, and the voice of the bride, the voice of them that shall say, Praise the Lord of hosts: for the Lord is good; for his mercy endureth for ever: and of them that shall bring the sacrifice of praise into the house of the Lord. For I will cause to return the captivity of the land, as at the first, saith the Lord.Jeremiah 33:11
By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name.Hebrews 13:15
Paul makes clear when and how we are to offer the sacrifice of praise: continually, and without mouths! But how?
Ambassadors for Jesus
Did you know that we are to be ambassadors for Jesus on this earth? It’s true! Let’s take a look at the definition of “ambassador”.
1: an official envoy
especially: a diplomatic agent of the highest rank accredited to a foreign govrnment or sovereign as the resident representative of his or her own government or sovereign or appointed for a special and often temporary diplomatic assignment“ambassador.” Merriam-Webster.com. Merriam-Webster
(30 November 2018)
When you consider this definition, and the implications it has on us, as Christians, it should effectively “blow your mind”! Just look at the following verses of Scripture.
Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God.2 Corinthians 5:20, KJV
For which I am an ambassador in bonds: that therein I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.Ephesians 6:20, KJV
Our job on this earth goes far beyond simply sitting in church on Sunday mornings. It surpasses our jewelry, bumper stickers, and social media picture frames. It’s suppose to be a way of life. And a bold one at that!
If our praise has to be a sacrifice, then so be it. It is our job, our lineage, our highest calling!
Bringing It Home
It’s not always going to be easy. In fact, the enemy will do everything in his power to knock you off track. He will push every button that has ever worked in the past. And if that doesn’t work, he’ll push them all at once!
In the past, I have had to offer the sacrifice of praise when our vehicle broke down. There was no money to fix it and it looked like we were really in trouble.
I have had to offer the sacrifice of praise when my children broke my heart.
I have had to offer the sacrifice of praise when ALL the money was gone. It looked like we wouldn’t have food or other necessities.
I’m telling you from personal experience… trust God. Take Him at His Word. Speak it out loud so the enemy knows you mean business. And then, watch His mighty Hand at work!