The Joy of True Worship
Dear sister in Christ,
What do you think of when you think of the word "worship"? Do you think just of the music that they place at the beginning of church service? Do you think of prayer? Do you think of worshipping when you receive a blessing?
Several days ago, one of my church leaders asked me to write about how I worship God through serving, and the topic has been on my heart ever since. So let's talk about worship.
What is worship? Looking throughout the Bible, we find that worship is the proper response to the self-revelation of God.
We worship God because of who He is. He alone is worthy of worship. ~ CLICK TO TWEET
Think too on Psalm 95:6, it states,
"Come, let us worship and bow down.
Let us kneel before the LORD our maker,"
"The LORD our maker", God is the creator of everything, and I believe that our purpose our one ultimate and highest purpose is to worship our maker the LORD.
What is True Worship?
The Bible makes it clear that there is both true and artificial worship ~ John 4:23. Consider what we discussed in The Heart Behind It if God is concerned with the heart because actions flow from the heart, do you think that the mere pretense of worship is what He desires?
If our hearts are not in reverence and awe of God but are turned away from God, our worship is not authentic.
"These people honor me with their lips,
but their hearts are far from me. Their worship is a farce,
for they teach man-made ideas as commands from God." ~ Matthew 15:8-9
It isn't enough to act religious, we do not just play church, our actions and thoughts must be sincere. Additionally, if we worship God with our words but continue in intentionally doing what is wrong, how can our worship be genuine?
"The king of Assyria then commanded, “Send one of the exiled priests back to Samaria. Let him live there and teach the new residents the religious customs of the God of the land.” So one of the priests who had been exiled from Samaria returned to Bethel and taught the new residents how to worship the LORD. But these various groups of foreigners also continued to worship their own gods. In town after town where they lived, they placed their idols at the pagan shrines that the people of Samaria had built." ~ 2 Kings 17:27-29
Worship of our God shouldn't be based on our circumstances or even our feelings.
Now, I unquestionably do not want this to be a downer letter to you, my reader, I just want to establish what worship isn't and it isn't a lip service or ritualistic actions.
True worship reveals a heart full of joy and peace in devotion to our glorious LORD.
True worship uncovers a heart open and longing to know more about God and to have a deeper relationship with Him.
We worship Him because of who He is, what He has done, and what He has promised. ~ CLICK TO TWEET
We "worship with awe" (Life.Church 2017).
"Since we are receiving a Kingdom that is unshakable, let us be thankful and please God by worshiping him with holy fear and awe. For our God is a devouring fire." ~ Hebrews 12:28-29
God is an all-consuming fire, uncontrollable and uncontainable, thus we worship Him with a holy fear, reverence, and awe. ~ CLICK TO TWEET
We have a Kingdom through Jesus that cannot be shaken. Do you continue to worship God in the midst of hardship, suffering, or waiting? In seasons of blessings do you continue to worship God for meeting your needs? Regardless of what we are experiencing, God is good and worthy of our worship. His Kingdom is unshakable and if we are in Christ, we can experience this blessing.
Christ told us that we must "worship in Spirit and in truth” ~ John 4:24. Thus we worship in the Spirit of Jesus Christ who dwells within us. And we worship in truth, the truth that God loves us and reconciled us through Jesus.
When we truly worship the LORD, we can feel the power of His mighty presence and it is overwhelming.
We "worship with abandon" (Life.Church 2017).
Our worship should be without inhibition because it's not about us, it's about Him. ~ CLICK TO TWEET
For me, this is an area I struggle with. I have always been very self-conscious, but what has helped me with this is serving in Life.Kids. We sing and dance and give it all. To an outsider, we may look silly. But not to God because we do it out of love and wonder of Him. He is our audience.
If you struggle with reserve when worshiping and you feel like it is holding you back, I encourage you to pray and think of David. The Bible says in 2 Samuel 6:14
"And David danced before the LORD with all his might, wearing a priestly garment."
And when he was ridiculed for his actions by his wife he replied,
"Yes, and I am willing to look even more foolish than this, even to be humiliated in my own eyes! But those servant girls you mentioned will indeed think I am distinguished!" ~ 2 Samuel 6:22
Don't be afraid or preoccupied with your outward appearance like David's wife, worship is about the condition of your heart before God.
Ways to Worship
We established that true worship is about the condition of our heart towards God a heart of awe, reverence, and holy fear. So what are some ways we can worship?
Worship can take shape many ways.
We can worship God through celebrations ~ Leviticus 23:44
In nature ~ 9 Ways to Connect with God in Nature
This list is by no means exhaustive, but it shows that, worship can be done in many ways. I mentioned the book What's Your God Language? by Dr. Myra Perrine in the post 9 Ways to Connect with God in Nature and I want to mention it again.
Just as God made each of us unique in personality, abilities, and spiritual gifts, it makes sense that we each have unique ways in which we connect to God and different forms of worship we gravitate towards and this is what the book discusses exactly. I couldn't recommend this book enough!
I want to quickly share with you my top three "spiritual temperaments" or the ways I authentically connect to and worship God. What's Your God Language? provides an inventory so you can objectively get insight into how you personally connect to God. Tied for my top "spiritual temperaments" were "the enthusiast" and "the naturalist," neither of which surprised me. What did surprise me was that my second highest temperament was "the activist." However, after I read more about it I could see how those characteristics played out in my life. It also helped me realize that there are more ways I could serve the Kingdom than I had thought of before.
Something that brings me much anticipation, excitement and joy is that one day all creation will join together bowing down and worshipping the LORD.
"For the Scriptures say,
“‘As surely as I live,’ says the LORD,
‘every knee will bend to me,
and every tongue will declare allegiance to God.’”" ~ Romans 14:11
"And then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and in the sea. They sang:
“Blessing and honor and glory and power
belong to the one sitting on the throne
and to the Lamb forever and ever.”" ~ Revelation 5:13
One day, we will all worship God together. I hope these truths bring you excitement and joy as well sister and I want to ask you, what is the greatest desire of your heart? David writes in Psalms 27:4
"The one thing I ask of the LORD — the thing I seek most— is to live in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, delighting in the LORD’s perfections and meditating in his Temple."
Does your heart want nothing more than to spend eternity staring into the loving face of the Creator? Do you love to worship?
We have a Creator who continually pursues us and wants us to pursue Him. He wants to spend time with us, He loves our sincere worship.
"We know that God doesn’t listen to sinners, but he is ready to hear those who worship him and do his will." ~ John 9:31
God desires us to truly worship and get to know Him intimately. If you are not there yet, you absolutely can be. God is patient. Start incorporating worship daily, spend time with Him. As we discussed, there are many ways to worship. Plan 10 or 15 minutes daily to have time set aside to fully engage and devote to worship.
Get to know Him, not just about Him. Be obedient and realize He alone is worthy of your worship and worship Him.
And the more you engage in the things of God and abide in Him, the more you will hunger for the things of God and desire His presence.
"Shout with joy to the LORD, all the earth! Worship the LORD with gladness. Come before him, singing with joy." ~ Psalms 100:1-2
I pray that our worship will not be routine, but real.
Yours Truly, LeNae
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Life.Church. 2017. True Worshipers. https://www.life.church/watch/true-worshipers/true-worshipers/. Accessed September 7.
Perrine. Dr. Myra Perrine. 2007. What's Your God Language? Tyndal House Publishers, Inc. Carol Stream: Illinois.
"The Joy of True Worship" ~ Photo by Bryan Minear on Unsplash