This week in my series on developing a relationship with God, I will be looking at the whole subject of worship. This is a huge topic so I won’t be able to cover everything, but I hope to reveal how important worship is if we want to go deeper with God and know Him more intimately.
When you think about it, everybody can be considered to be a worshipper, whether they are religious or not. Everyone has something or someone they worship.
The object of peoples’ worship can be fairly obvious when we observe the tell-tale signs:
· What do they talk about most often?
· What do they spend most of their time doing?
· What do they spend all their money on?
The answers to those questions tell us what is being worshipped. It could literally be anything; a family pet, a car, a sports team, sex, even a political philosophy or something equally abstract.
Worship is in our DNA, we were made for it.
We were made to worship God. Worshipping God brings the greatest fulfilment, but conversely, worshipping other things will ultimately not satisfy. We can never get enough of what we are worshipping. We can spend ever more time, resources and energy pursuing personal satisfaction but if God is not the object of our affections there will always be something missing.
Growing in intimacy
For the Christian, worshipping God should be the natural inclination for a soul who has experienced overwhelming grace and mercy. Our response is to worship this great God who loves us, has pursued us and saved us, even though He knows what we are like.
In past weeks we have looked at the importance of prayer and bible study and worship can come out of these things. We can sometimes read something in the bible that in the moment takes our breath away and the logical and natural thing is to start to worship.
The place in the bible to start reading if we want to be drawn into worship is the book of Psalms. They follow the full gamut of human emotions, from despair to ecstatic joy, and they all teach us about God and His ways and how we can come to Him whatever situation we may find ourselves in.
Much more than just singing
We can quite easily have the idea that worship is mainly singing songs, however the bible is clear that it is so much more than that. We worship with our voices, yes, but also with our bodies, our hearts, our attitudes and our thoughts. We are worshipping God just as much when we are making honourable decisions that please God, when we resist temptation, act in a kindly way etc. as when we sing in church on Sunday.
Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters,since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving. (Colossians 3:23-24)
You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it; you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings. My sacrifice, O God, is a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart you, God, will not despise. (Psalm 51:16, 17 NIV)