Whether we realize it or not, we all do it. We all worship something or someone. We all give our adoration and honor and even our lives to an object to which we ascribe preeminent worth.
In the Christian world, we would say that we worship God. Mostly, we do this by “going to” or “attending” worship, in which worship is the part of “church” where we sing.
My vocabulary often revealed that this was my belief as well. But worship is so much more than something to be attended. Worship is far more than the singing of songs, which is better defined as praise.
Praise can be an element of worship, but worship is not exclusively praise. When you are offering songs of praise to the Lord, by yourself or gathered with other believers, you could be bringing an offering of thanks and praise to Him. Or, you could just be singing words on a screen.
As with most things, it’s about your heart posture.
Enter His gates with thanksgiving And His courts with praise. Give thanks to Him, bless His name.” – Psalm 100:4
A heart of thanksgiving moves us beyond the threshold of the gates of the Lord. That thanks expressed in praise carries us further into His courts.
But to enter the Holy of Holies, to know the Presence of the Lord in It’s fullness, is a deeper thing than even thanksgiving and praise. This Fullness moves beyond the expression of what has been done for us, into an expression of awe simply because of Who He Is. It requires more than a response of thankfulness and song that can be conjured up in our strength. It requires something more than we have to give.
It requires sacrifice. It requires loss. It requires death.
The Eternal Purpose of God is to have us, His creation, for Himself – as a Body, a Bride, a Family and a House. These involve making ministering to the Lord, blessing Him – our response out of His first Love of us. By Him, all things were created for His pleasure and glory. You are made by God, for God – to love Him and minister to Him forever. God longs for us to come to Him for Himself, instead of only what He has done, or can do for us.
Can you see the distinction? The difficulty? The… impossibility? To love the Lord in this way cannot be done. We try, we really do. We are a culture of Martha’s, working ourselves to the bone with the sincerest of intentions, to do something for God. We thank. We praise. We serve. We do. And these are all good. But Jesus is sitting in the other room, beckoning our being with Him – to empty our jars of oil and perfume and tears upon Him… in worship.
What Mary had realized in that room was that loving the Lord could not be done in her flesh. She had to die to that, allowing His Love of her to Live through her, back to Him, and into the world. This is the death that is required, the sacrifice and offering that is worship.
The Lord is Spirit. The Lord is Truth. The Lord is seeking worshippers who worship Him in Spirit and in Truth. It is possible to work and serve and do and thank and praise in our flesh. But:
…no flesh should glory in his presence.” – 1 Corinthians 1:29 (KJV)
To Love and to Be and to Worship requires Living from Another within – Living by the Spirit and the Truth whom indwells us.
This is presenting ourselves as a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God – our spiritual service of worship. (Romans 12:1)
This Divine Fellowship in which we Live and move and find our being – exists in a continual state of worship. Father, Son and Holy Spirit are continuously pouring our their worship upon one another. We are invited to join in. To be there. With them. In them. One with them. To realize this unity is to submit to the rhythm of their worship. It is to live their Life.
This Life will be expressed through us into the world. Since this Life is Love, is Worship, this means when we are sacrificed in our flesh, and submitted to Live by this Life – everything we do can be a spiritual service of worship.
- Can you worship the Lord without words, in silence?
- Can you worship the Lord while sleeping?
- Can you worship the Lord in your first waking, conscious moments in bed?
- Can you worship the Lord brushing your teeth?
- Can you worship the Lord eating your breakfast? Every meal? (What is “communion” anyway?)
- Can you worship the Lord while driving in your car?
- Can you worship the Lord while working?
- Can you worship the Lord with every conversation you have, and in every relationship He has in your life?
- Can you worship the Lord in your marriage? (What is submission and dying for your spouse anyway?)
- Can you worship the Lord when you make love to your spouse?
- Can you worship the Lord while you parent your children?
- Can you worship the Lord while wrestling and tickling your kids?
We could go on and on. I didn’t even mention singing or raising hands or praying or Bible reading or many other things typically given to the term of Christian “worship.” The point is, the Lord Jesus Lives within you. He does so with a desire to express Himself through you, as worship, to the Godhead, and as Love to the world. In responding from His Life inside, you will Live in such a place of continual communion with Him and abiding on the Vine, that everything can be worship.
Worship is Life. It is LIFE-style.
Worship is giving to God something because He is worthy. It is giving to God your very life, so that He can Live His.
Friend, you were created by God for worship. You were created to worship Him, in Spirit and in Truth. You were created to Live a Life that is not your own. Until this is realized, you will be frustrated and restless. Once it is realized, you will never lack Joy and Peace.
Seek ye first then, the Kingdom of God… and Worship.
What do you think? Do you agree or disagree? What would you add? What is worship to you?