By our very nature we are creatures of worship. God created us to worship Him. It is why we were made. We were designed to fellowship with Him forever and part of the fellowship is lifting up the Lord God, praising Him for who He is. He is Yahweh, He is Jehovah, He is the great I AM, He is majestic, He is sovereign, He is the Mighty God, He is holy, He is just, He is lovely, He is righteous, He is the God of gods and King of kings and He is the God of forgiveness, restoration, provision, and grace… just to name a few of His characteristics and personality.
Jesus said in John 4:24, “God is spirit, and His worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.” Just a look around the world and we see that people of every race and creed worship God in a panorama of styles. Our culture includes all kinds of ways in which people look at worship and engage in worship. Is any one way of worship more right than another? We may think so… but the question we should be asking is: What is God’s idea about worship? Wouldn’t His thoughts be most accurate when it comes to worship? I think so.
Does God prefer formal or informal worship? Does He prefer ritualistic ceremonial or spontaneous or impulsive? Noisy or quiet, contemporary or traditional? Dignified or recklessly passionate? Well… no matter who you talk to you will find just about everyone has their own opinion on the matter. And yet, they and their thoughts are really not at the heart of the matter. Worship goes deeper than our opinions and thoughts.
What God desires most has less to do with how we express our worship or styles we use than the spirit that is behind our worship. In adoration of the Almighty, God wants our inspiration and our integrity, sincerity and spirit of sacrifice. He wants our outward expression to match what our inward attitudes are. Think about that. What is inside of a man eventually will come out of him. Jesus also said, Matthew 15:10, “Listen and understand. What goes into someone’s mouth does not defile them, but what comes out of their mouth, that is what defiles them.” And the Psalmist said, Psalm 150:6, “Let everything that has breath praise the lord.” God wants us to know who He is and worship Him from the heart and to be real about it.
That’s hard for us. It is hard because it is easier to go along to get-along verses to stand for what is truth. No one likes to stand out and be counted or be seen controversial. Our emotions come into play where we are either too emotional or not very emotional. Or we are too rigid, to unstructured, too self-conscious or not self-aware enough. Most likely for most of us we turn what God wants (a heart of worship) into a series of routines like a check-off list in how we worship. What may have been sincere devoted worship yesterday becomes looking for God to approve our performance today. If I go to church this week, I have done my duty, if I have fulfilled some ministry then I have found God’s favor. To which none of this is about truth.
God is interested in our heart, in our passion for His presence and our desire to be filled with Himself to fully engage Him with our spirit and truthfully from deep within worship Sunday through Saturday. He wants us to treasure Him. And most of all, He wants all of you.
In Him, Your Pastor,