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31 Ways to Praise

Have you ever experienced a lack of words when you turn to prayer? Here are some suggestions to energize your prayer life.

I'm not often at a loss for words. My wife says that, when we first began dating, my use of words to describe her considerable charms was one of the things that most encouraged her budding love for me.

Cec's concept opened a door for me to new power in praise.

Later, as a pastor and preacher, I seldom struggled for something to say, either in or out of the pulpit. And, of course, as a writer, my long-time friendship with words has stood me in good stead. (Writers, after all, are often paid by the word!)

But it's always been different, it seems, in prayer—particularly when I undertake to express my adoration to God. I want to praise God with all that is within me, but my tongue seems to halt in my mouth, and I can't think of a sensible thing to say.

That was the case, at least, until recently. I read a book by a friend of mine, Cecil ("Cec") Murphey, called Invading the Privacy of God. Cec describes how his prayer life was revolutionized when he settled on the practice of praying according to a list of God's attributes. He concentrated on God as the Wonderful Counsellor one day, the Mighty God the second day, the Everlasting Father the next day, and so on.

Cec's concept opened a door for me to new power in praise. I began to imitate his practice, applying it specifically to the moments in my prayer life when I want to focus on praising God for who He is.

Over the course of a few months, I developed a "program of praise" that has proven wonderfully helpful to me in expressing my praise to my praiseworthy God. I focus on one attribute of my awesome God and Father each day, using the Scripture-based sentences as "praise-starters." At month's end, I begin praying through the list again, sometimes combining traits when the month is shorter than 31 days.

I pray that it will energize your praise life as it energized mine …

Whether you adopt or adapt the following, or compose a praise program of your own, I pray that it will energize your praise life as it energized mine, and that it will help you praise God more knowledgeably and purposefully.

1. God the Creator: Creator God, I praise you because you made the heavens, even the highest heavens, and all their starry host, the earth and all that is on it, the seas and all that is in them. You give life to everything, and the multitudes of heaven worship you (see Nehemiah 9:6).

2. The Only God: God, I praise you because you are the Lord, and there is no other; apart from you there is no God (see Isaiah 45:5).

3. The Almighty God: O Lord God Almighty, who is like you? You are mighty, O Lord, and I praise you (see Psalm 89:8).

4. The Everlasting Father: I praise you, Lord, as the Ancient of Days, the Everlasting Father who lives forever and ever (see Daniel 7:9; Isaiah 9:6).

5. A Loving God: I praise you because you are a loving God, whose very nature is love (see 1 John 4:16).

6. A God of Justice: Lord, I praise and magnify you, who are just and the one who justifies those who have faith in Jesus (see Romans 3:26).

7. The Trustworthy God: Heavenly Father, I give you my praise and adoration, because you are a faithful God, keeping your covenant of love to a thousand generations of those who love you and keep your commands (see Deuteronomy 7:9).

8. A Merciful God: You, O Lord, are a gracious and merciful God, and I praise you for your great mercy (see Nehemiah 9:31).

9. God my Refuge, my Fortress: I praise you, Lord, for you are my mighty rock, my refuge (see Psalm 62:7).

10. A Longsuffering, Persevering God: Father, I praise you because you are patient with all your children, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. Thank you for your patience with me (see 2 Peter 3:9).

11. The Only Wise God: I give praise to you, my Father, the only wise God my Saviour. May all glory and majesty, dominion and power, be yours both now and ever (see Jude 25 KJV).

12. The Holy One: Holy, holy, holy are you, Lord God Almighty, who was, and is, and is to come … (see Revelation 4:8)

13. A Personal God: I praise you, God, because you are a personal God, who gives me the honour of knowing you personally, just as Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob did (see Matthew 8:11).

14. A Giving God: Praise and honour be yours, O God, because you are a generous God, who did not even stop short of giving your own Son (see John 3:16).

15. The Provider God: I praise you today, Lord, as my Jehovah-jireh, who will generously provide all I need (see 2 Corinthians 9:7).

16. The Shepherd God: I bless your name and praise you as my Jehovah-rohi, who will shepherd me and guide me in the paths of righteousness for your name's sake (see Psalm 23:1–3).

17. God my Victory: Praise to you, my God, because you are my Jehovah-nissi, God my victory, who always leads me in triumphal procession in Christ (see 2 Corinthians 2:14).

18. God my Peace: I praise you with all my heart, Lord, because you are my Jehovah-shalom, the God of peace who will soon crush Satan under my feet (see Romans 16:20).

19. The God Who Heals: Father, I praise you because you are the Lord who heals me (see Exodus 15:26).

20. The God of All Comfort: Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort (see 2 Corinthians 1:3).

21. The God of Miracles: I praise you because you are the God who performs miracles; you display your power among the people (see Psalm 77:14).

22. A Forgiving God: I want to bless you with my praise, because you are a forgiving God, gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love (see Nehemiah 9:17).

23. The Burden-Bearer: Praise be to the Lord, to God my Saviour, who daily bears my burdens (see Psalm 68:19).

24. A Faithful God: I praise you because your love, O Lord, reaches to the heavens, your faithfulness to the skies. Great is your faithfulness (see Psalm 36:5; Lamentations 3:23).

25. God the Blessed and Only Ruler: All honour and praise be to you, my God, the blessed and only Ruler, the King of kings and Lord of lords (see 1 Timothy 6:15).

26. God the Liberator: I praise you because you are my help and my deliverer, O Lord (see Psalm 70:5).

27. The Lifter of My Head: Father God, I praise you because you are a shield around me, O Lord; you bestow glory on me and lift up my head when I am weary or depressed (see Psalm 3:3).

28. A God of Light: I praise you, Lord, because you are my light and my salvation. You know what lies in darkness, and light dwells with you (see Psalm 27:1, Daniel 2:22).

29. A God of Joy: I give you my praise, O Lord, because you have granted me eternal blessings and made me glad with the joy of your presence (see Psalm 21:6).

30. The God Who Answers Prayer: I praise and honour you, because you are a God who loves to answer prayer, and who begins to answer even before I begin to pray (see Isaiah 65:24).

31. The God of All the Earth: I praise and adore you, Lord, as the Holy One of Israel, my Redeemer, the God of all the earth (see Isaiah 54:5).

Bob Hostetler is the author of 20 books, including Don't Check Your Brains at the Door (co-authored with Josh McDowell) and They Call Me A.W.O.L. He is also Pastor of Leadership and Teaching for Cobblestone Community Church in Oxford, Ohio. He and his wife, Robin, have two grown children. His web site is:

Originally published in the Mennonite Brethren Herald, Aug 22, 2003.
Copyright for this article ( is held by Bob Hostetler.




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