How To Praise and Worship God

Abundant living is all about being filled with the Lord and His presence. As discussed in a previous article, He wants us to live abundantly in Him. That entails us getting close to God and developing a relationship with Him. How do we do that?

There are many ways to draw near to God and today we'll explore two of the ways: praise and worship. Praise and worship are sometimes used interchangeably, but they are two different things, though closely related.

What Is Praise?

The basic biblical definition of praise is being thankful, but there's more to it than that. Biblical praise is all about getting the focus off us and on our Lord. There are three aspects to praise: thankfulness, boasting, and complimenting.

Thankfulness might be the most common thought associated with praise. God commands us several times in the Bible to be thankful. We can be thankful for who God is, what He has done for us, and all the gifts He's given us. Just like any gift giver, God loves to hear our gratitude towards Him. Also, thankfulness opens our eyes to all the good things we have or that has happened to us.

Boasting might seem like a weird one. We tend to stay away from people who are constantly bragging about their family, money, possessions, or position in life. Going on and on about God isn't obnoxious though. Instead of detracting others from Him, it brings people closer to Him. As long as the attention isn't focused on us or our situation, what we say brings glory to God because we're concentrating on Him.

Complimenting God sounds like we're patronizing Him. Who are we to tell the Creator of the world whether or not He does a good job? But when I say compliment, I mean acknowledging and being enthusiastic about what God's done or what He's doing. It's important when we pray to tell God all these things. It benefits us, because then we focus on Him rather than us.

"But thou art holy, O thou that inhabitest the praises of Israel." Psalm 22:3, KJV.

How To Praise God

You may be asking, "How do I praise God?" Below are a few ideas to get you started!

~ Recognizing and thanking Him for what He's done in Your life
God has done so much in our life. Look around and identify what He has done for you and what He's doing now.

~ Thanking Him for who He is and His promises to you
If you don't know what to say when you praise God, start with God and His promises. The Psalms is a great place to get inspiration for what to praise God for. The Psalmists often extolled God's mercy, grace, goodness, and righteousness, as well as His promises. Another option is to pray through a Psalm, since many of them are prayers of praise.

~ When He does something in our life, telling others what He's done
Has something good happened recently that could only have come from God? Tell others about it! Not only does it bring God glory, it encourages others and reminds them that God works in our lives.

~ Noticing and appreciating nature, blessings, and gifts He's given
Not only does God act for us, He also gives us many things. Take a few minutes each day and pick out five things God put in your path to enjoy. These could be a bird on the windowsill, a call from a friend, a cup of coffee - any number of little things. Once you start paying attention, it's amazing how many things God gives us to enjoy!

What Is Worship?

Worshipping God is more of an attitude than an action. Praise can help develop an attitude of worship though. The definition of worship is adore, reverence, fear, honor, or respect.

Picture someone coming into the throne room of a great ruler. He or she would probably gaze at their grand surroundings and when they approached the throne they would bow, be respectful, and generally be in awe.

That's the same way we should approach God at times. While He is our Heavenly Father and we have the privilege to treat Him as a father, He's also our Lord, King, and Savior. Our attitude towards Him should be one of awe and adoration. Jesus said in John 4:24 that we must worship God in spirit and in truth. In other words, we should worship in our hearts and be sincere. This kind of worship pleases God. Even Jesus worshipped His Father. If our Savior did it, we should too.

How To Worship God

We can worship anywhere: home, church, the store, driving down the road. The following ideas can help you.

~ Praise Him
Praising God helps prepare us for worship. See the section above for some ideas.

~ Listen to praise and worship songs
Music can help put us in a worshipful state of mind. There are many varieties of praise and worship songs. A quick search should give you plenty of options.

~ Meditate on Scripture
Meditation has a negative connotation nowadays, but it is a biblical practice. Biblical meditation is dwelling on God or a Bible verse for a period of time. There is no set amount of time; start small and work your way up. To help concentrate, find some place quiet to meditate so you're not distracted. If your mind wanders, read the verse again or refocus on what you last thought.


Praising and worshipping God is simpler than we think. In a nutshell, it's forgetting about ourselves and concentrating on our Lord. God loves it when we take time to praise and worship Him. The difference between praise and worship is that praise is about acknowledging and thanking God for who He is, what He's done, and what He's given us. Worship is having an attitude of reverence, awe, and adoration towards God and happens in our hearts.

How can you take time to do these things this week?
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Beth - May 9th, 2024 at 3:44pm

Great article about the differences between praise and worship! I love some good worship music!

- May 9th, 2024 at 3:50pm

So do I! (: