WHAT IS CHRISTIAN WORSHIP
Most Christians think singing is all there is to worshipping God.
Every Sunday morning many of the people in our town prepare to go to church. Each man, woman and child has a story – a life that goes on from Monday through Saturday. Many of them rush to get to church on time. Some people don’t even decide to go to church until Sunday morning. So, for those who do arrive, who walk into a church and take a seat, what does it really matter what takes place in the next hour?
So, what is worship?
Worship is not about us. It is not about what I want or what makes me happy. It is about God.
Worship as a verb, is a call to action. The dictionary says Worship is to: revere, reverence, venerate, pay homage to, honor, adore, praise, pray to, bow down before, glorify, exalt, extol; be devoted to, dote on, love, hold dear, cherish, treasure, admire, esteem, adulate, idolize, deify, hero-worship, lionize, have a high regard for, hold in high regard, hold in esteem, hold in awe, look up to; informal be wild about, put on a pedestal; archaic magnify.
Wow, how can we do that? Can we do that anywhere? Do we have to be in a church building to do that? Do I have to have on special clothes to do that? What do I need to DO to be worshipping?
Worship is all about God, so the main thing is to be thinking about God and His goodness and His faithfulness to be with you, and His provision and protection in your life, and His patience with you and His forgiveness…. And the list can go on.
One thing you have, despite the fact that we have all experienced difficult times in our lives, is that God has promised us that He will never abandon us, He will never bail out on us, He will never fail us. In Hebrews 5: 13b, Jesus said, “Never will I leave you, Never will I forsake/reject you.”
Instead, in Jeremiah 29:11 He promises us “For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
It’s promises like these, promises which lead us to better understand God’s plans for you and I, His plans to prosper us, to give us hope and a future, not to harm us that should lead us into worship because we are THANKFUL, despite our difficult times.
What are some things about God that you are thankful for? (a good family, good friends, a place to live, clothes to wear, people who care about you, good health, ….)
Worship is letting God know how thankful you are for all of those things. You can do that anywhere. Church is the place where we come together to worship God TOGETHER. We should think of God as we sing and give and pray and listen to God’s Word. We worship at church, but church is also a place to learn more about how to LIVE to please God, and it’s a place to encourage others or to be encouraged by others.
But, no, you don’t have to just worship God, in a church building. We should worship God wherever we are. And no you don’t have to wear special clothes. God looks does not look on the outside, he looks at the heart.
Psalm 100 describes how our worship should be: Shout joyfully to the Lord, all the earth. Serve the Lord with gladness; Come before Him with joyful singing. Know that the Lord Himself is God; It is He who has made us, and not we ourselves; We are His people and the sheep of His pasture. Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise. Give thanks to Him, bless His name. For the Lord is good; His lovingkindness is everlasting and His faithfulness to all generations.
Can you see the focus is on God? (the Lord is God, He made, His people, His pasture, His gates, His courts, His name, His goodness, His faithfulness…..)
Can you see what our activity should be when we focus on HIM? (We will shout, we will have gladness, we will sing, we will have thankfulness, we will have praise!)
What has your worship been like? Do you show God how much He means to you when you worship? Do you sing to God? Do you give to God? Do you pray to God to tell Him how much he means to you?
Remember, it’s not about you. Worship is about God.