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  • Writer's pictureDawn Ward

How to Praise God with All Your Heart

Updated: 2 days ago

Woman outside hands in air
"I will praise you, Lord my God, with all my heart; I will glorify your name forever.” ‭‭Psalm‬ ‭86:12‬ ‭NIV‬‬

How do we praise the Lord with our whole heart? How do we worship Him with our very being, our soul, our will, our mind, and our emotions?


Praising the Lord with a heart free from distractions in a distraction-filled world may seem almost impossible.


There is an abundance of noise-producing and attention-diverting images to crowd our minds and shift our focus from our Creator to the created. If we didn’t have ADHD as a child, we probably have it by now.


Praising God with our whole hearts happens when we learn to separate ourselves from the distractions and immediate demands weighing on our minds.


While we can praise the Lord anywhere and at any time, remember that the enemy wants our praise, and that comes in the form of dragging us away from our First Love and enticing us to worry, fear, and obsess. Then he tempts us to act on those emotions.


6 Ways to Praise God With All Your Heart

There are a few steps we can take to cleanse our minds, focus our attention, and prepare our hearts for worship.


1. Be Thankful. There are lots of things to be thankful for. It may not feel like it, but there are. Our salvation, breath in our lungs, the Spirit of God living in us, the love of God, family, friends, water, air! The list goes on. Start with thanksgiving, and the rest comes easily.


“Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name.” Psalm 100:4.

2. Be Humble. Bow down before Him. Acknowledge the greatness of God. He is our Maker. We are His sheep. He is our Savior. We would be nothing without Him. Awestruck wonder naturally fills our hearts with a desire to praise Him.


“Come, let us bow down in worship, let us kneel before the Lord our Maker; for he is our God and we are the people of his pasture, the flock under his care. Today, if only you would hear his voice,” Psalm 95:6-7

3. Be Reflective. Consider your own heart and its current condition. Does it need confession or to receive forgiveness? Perhaps it needs to forgive. Is it storing bitterness, anger, fear, jealousy, entitlement, shame? Have you given something or someone to God, only to pick it or them back up again? Is it filled with expectation and hope for each new day? Is it consumed with the love of God, giving and receiving that love?


Reflect on the goodness and kindness of the Lord each and every day. Be transformed by His love.


“Great are the works of the Lord; they are pondered by all who delight in them. Glorious and majestic are his deeds, and his righteousness endures forever. He has caused his wonders to be remembered; the Lord is gracious and compassionate.” ‭‭Psalm‬ ‭111:2-4‬ ‭NIV‬‬

4. Be Obedient. Is there something God has called you to do that is remaining undone? All the praise in the world doesn’t make up for a lack of obedience. Partial obedience doesn’t cut it either. To obey God in one area doesn’t make up for lack of obedience in another. There is no bargaining with God. He expects us to listen and obey. (Listen, I am preaching to myself as well here!)


Obedience to the Lord’s instructions may require us to take little steps or giants steps of faith. It may mean jumping in blindly or doing some careful and thoughtful planning, but either way, it has to get done.


Disobedience hinders us from moving forward. If you feel stuck, stop and consider if there is an area in your life where you may have been disobedient. Ask the Lord to forgive you as you seek to live a life pleasing to Him. Start today with changing direction and setting your course to do that thing God is calling you to do.


“Don’t you know that when you offer yourselves to someone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one you obey—whether you are slaves to sin, which leads to death, or to obedience, which leads to righteousness?” Romans‬ ‭6:16‬ NIV‭

5. Be Expectant. Look forward to the promises of God. Let nothing or no one steal your joy. An expectant heart yearns for whatever lies around the corner. It is a yielded heart. Its expectations are not centered around selfish demands, but are surrendered to the will of God. What does the Lord have in store for me today? How does He want to use me? It understands that even the worst of circumstances are good because the Lord is always good. It looks forward to each new day with hopeful expectation.


“My soul yearns for you in the night; in the morning my spirit longs for you. When your judgments come upon the earth, the people of the world learn righteousness.” Isaiah‬ ‭26:9‬ ‭NIV‬‬

6. Be Surrendered. Finally, praising God with our whole hearts means that we surrender ourselves to letting go of our own agendas. No more deciding what our own lives should look like. Current teachings and trends tell us to make our destinies happen by speaking them into being or manipulating circumstances and people to get there. This is not a surrendered life.


A surrendered life yields to the movement of the Spirit of God. Things change. People change. God does not change. He has a plan and it will be accomplished, even if it requires us to change directions.


“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.” ‭‭Jeremiah‬ ‭29:11-12‬ ‭NIV‬‬
People at concert hands in air

As we learn to praise the Lord with our whole hearts, let’s choose to be thankful, humble, reflective, obedient, expectant, and surrendered. In doing so, our hearts will be transformed into hearts of praise and worship to our Lord. They will become clutter-free zones, revived, and ready to receive all that the Lord desires to pour into them.


A Prayer to Praise God With All Your Heart

Dear Lord.

We center our hearts and minds on You. We desire to praise You and to be able to listen and obey Your voice. We choose to set aside time to worship You and to trust in You plans for us. Thank you, Lord. In Jesus name.

Amen.

 

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