What is worship really?
For me, it was always in the form of music. In my early Christian walk I didn’t know anything otherwise. Worship (to me) happened only while a beautiful song was playing proclaiming God’s love. I would sing along and maybe raise my hands. At times, I would be brought to tears, and other times God would reveal His heart’s desires for me.
But something happened in this last year and a half where I began to experience a different kind of worship. The kind of worship that doesn’t necessarily, look ‘pretty‘. The kind that usually met me in an uncomfortable struggle, tribulation or affliction and asked me, “How are you going to respond?”
A New Kind of Worship
It was in the moments of surrender and utter insufficiency that God allowed me to offer a new kind of worship to Him. It was a worship that didn’t come as a song but looked like taking a broken situation, laying it at the feet of Jesus, and proclaiming, “You are GOOD God”. There is something so beautiful about that kind of surrender. It’s a surrender that’s not reliant on comfort or being made much of but instead begs the question, “What wouldn’t I do for you Lord?”
Related Post: Worship breaks down walls.
Worship Without Conditions
I like to think God is most glorified when we worship in this way. In the times where the enemy hopes we feel forsaken by God that we are asked a critical question in our Christian walk. “Is God still worth praising?” even in the struggle, even in the disappointments?… I think when we make a resolve in our hearts that our love for God is solely dependent on who He is rather than what we are going through we experience a breakthrough with God that is indescribable. I believe it is in this mindset, we worship God with our life.
John Piper says it best in regards to Romans 12:1-2:
“Take me, body and soul and make me the instrument of your glory in the world. Let the renewal you are working from within show on the outside. This is my spiritual worship. To show the world you are my all-satisfying treasure.”
The Opportunity to Worship
So often we can sing a song proclaiming our love for God. But when God gives us a chance to respond to our life situations, we many times miss a chance to allow the words we proclaimed to become sincere. It is in these moments the God has given us an opportunity to really worship Him. It is one thing to sing words in the comfort of a church building. But it’s another to look at a bleak situation and say, “God you are good.” In my past season God has shown me so much of my brokenness. I was someone who was happy to sing those words, even raise my hands. But I had to honestly ask myself if I understood the weight of the words I was singing to God. When given the opportunity to live them out… would I?
Surrender Through Worship
It is an indescribable feeling to experience devastation or disappointment and say to God, “have your sovereign way.” When we are focused on the person of God we can’t live life any other way. On the other hand, when we fixate on the disappointments of life, we can forfeit the beauty of this type of worship.
The beautiful thing about Christianity is, we aren’t required to worship to earn our salvation. It is, though, evidence of our redemption and a product of the overflow of our heart. There is no dance, no song, and no sacrifice that brings us salvation. It is not in our strength at all that we can take credit for this but the blood of our precious savior that qualifies us to experience this beautiful exchange. Although we wish we could, our worship doesn’t produce salvation. Instead, it is a fruit of His goodness. Psalm 150:1-6 tells us one simple command: “Praise the LORD!” I’m overwhelmed at what that looks like in the form of worshiping our savior in all situations.
As I look back at this year, I can’t help but see the opportunities God has given me to respond with action, not just with words. And because He is a good Father, when I squander the opportunity, He presents me with another one. I hope, year after year, day after day, I will continually be given opportunities to worship God with my life.
My prayer for today:
God I pray that you allow us opportunities in our life to test the sincerity of our hearts. Lord give us renewed minds that are fixated on your goodness and glory. Father help us to not be discouraged by the hardships we endure in this life but use them as an opportunity to bring you praise. Like Job, Lord, I ask that when we challenge your will and goodness that we are humbled to understand your majesty and sovereign ways. Let us be overcome with the wholeness of who you are. God I pray we are all given opportunities to not just worship You with our mouths but most importantly with our lives. For it is there that You are most beautifully glorified. And it’s a beautiful exchange.