What To Do When We Don’t Feel Like Praising God

What To Do When We Don’t Feel Like Praising God

I like to praise God for who he is and thank him for what he does—most of the time. Sometimes, though, I just don’t feel like it. Intellectually, nothing’s changed; spiritually, he’s the same, but emotionally, I don’t want to.

What do I do in those cases?

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I praise and thank him anyway. As some people say, “fake it til you make it.”

Does this seem foolish? Will the Almighty strike me down for being disingenuous, for putting on a false front?

If I’m being phony to impress others, I’m on shaky ground, but if I push through because it’s the right thing, I suspect he approves—and delights in me.

Throughout our lives, we do all manner of things we don’t feel like doing:

  • Eating right
  • Exercising
  • Working
  • Getting enough rest
  • Helping others
  • Doing housework and yard work
  • Finishing homework
  • Keeping our promises

For each, we realize the benefits of the activity regardless if we felt like doing them or not:

  • We grow healthier
  • Our body becomes more toned and we lose weight
  • We earn money needed to live (and keep our job)
  • We aren’t tired
  • We make the world a bit better
  • Our living area becomes a more pleasant place
  • We learn and earn good grades
  • We become respected as a person of integrity (and avoid guilt in the process)

In each instance, the results are the same regardless if we felt like doing the right thing or not. The same is true for our relationship with God.

We need to push through, praising and thanking God, when we feel like it—and when we don’t. Either way, the result is the same.

Peter DeHaan writes about biblical spirituality, often with a postmodern slant. He seeks a fresh approach to faith and following God through the lens of scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices. Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.

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