Through Him then let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, acknowledging his name. (Hebrew 13:15)
(scroll to the bottom for the lock screen)
A sacrifice of praise. This phrase has captivated my curiosity for a while. When you think of praise, you usually think of smiling, happy, thankful emotions – praise as an outpouring of the joy in your heart. Right?
But the call to praise is not based on circumstances or how you feel. Sometimes praise demands a sacrifice.
Sacrifice is laying yourself down. And sacrifice will cost you.
A sacrifice of praise is acknowledging Christ's sovereignty, even when your heart is hurting so much you can hardly breathe. Like Abraham putting his son on the altar of Mt. Moriah, a sacrifice of praise is giving God whatever He asks you to give and trusting Him to provide.
Larnelle Harris wrote about this in his song When Praise Demands a Sacrifice:
(Gotta love the classic 90s sound there!)
(Chorus) When praise demands a sacrifice, I'll worship even then
Surrendering the dearest things in life
And if devotion costs me all
He'll find me faithful to His call
When praise demands a sacrifice
(Bridge) God hears the words of praise we lift
Yet I have found, He's honored more by what I'm willing to lay down
If you've ever been called to offer up a sacrifice of praise, then you know you don't have the strength to do it on your own. That's why Hebrews says, "Through Him." Jesus can help you worship in the midst of your pain. Like Abraham laying down his Isaac, Jesus can help you lay down that thing that's so dear to you.
The act of laying down your Isaac is the way we say to God, "You alone are enough. There are no other gods before You in my life."
Then God is glorified, and the world watches, mystified. How can she praise God when she's lost her job? How can he praise God when he was just diagnosed with cancer?
Our sacrifice of praise is a work in our hearts, as well as a testimony to others.
Can you think of a time you God called you to offer a sacrifice of praise? Could you say like Job, "Though He slay me, yet I will trust in Him." (Job 13:15)
Mercy Me has a song I've been listening to on repeat these days. Music has such power to speak to your heart on a different level. I hope it encourages you like it has me.
You can download the Hebrews 13:15 lockscreen from the box below to save to your mobile phone and to memorize this verse. Let it remind you of the call to praise Him. Let the reminder of His sacrifice be your strength.
with love and lettering,