How To Approach God

Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise. Give thanks to Him, bless His name. Psalm 100:4

“Please Sir, I want some more.”

So said the young orphan Oliver to the harsh housemaster in the Dickens’ classic Oliver Twist. And if you remember the scene, young Oliver’s request was soundly rejected.

I am afraid that we often approach God the same way. And while God is nothing like the harsh housemaster in the novel, it would serve us well to approach Him with more than just our hands out asking for more.

You are not a beggarly orphan. You are not a fatherless child. You are rather the child of the richest, most benevolent king in world. You are royalty. And when you approach your father with your needs—something he wants you to do—you can afford to lead with your voice of gratitude.

I have found that beginning my prayers with thanksgiving really takes the pressure off of my needs list. By the time I am finished thanking God for all he has done for me, my needs list doesn’t seem quite so pressing. I still pray it, but perhaps with a bit less urgency. After entering His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise, why would I ever doubt that He would not have my back going forward?

Have you prayed today? Why not take the counsel of this great verse to heart. Before you get to your needs, bombard heaven with your gratitude and praises. Thank God for what He has done—be specific—and then praise Him for who He is.

My guess is that you will find that it changes how you pray.

Holy Father, teach us to approach You with gratitude and worship. In Jesus’ name . . 



©2015 Will Davis Jr.  Originally posted at