During my recent surgery and recovery, I have been reminded of several lessons that are important while we strive to live the Christian life. I want to share some of these with you today.
Every Sunday, we start our services with a hearty “Good Morning” and then “I hope that you are excited to be here today”. Have you ever wondered what I mean by that? What do I really hope you are feeling at that moment?
I’ll tell you that I start off our services with the idea of being excited because it dictates how we worship our God. If we are excited to be here, excited for the opportunity to enter the throne room of God; to praise and worship Him, then we will be actively involved in what is happening. We will be connected emotionally, spiritually, and physically in the worship of the church.
Jesus said in John 4:24 that those who worshiped God must worship Him in Spirit and in truth. One of the key thoughts for us is that just going through the motions of the worship service is not really worship at all. If we are going to truly worship our great God we must do it in accordance to the truth of God’s word but also in truthfulness to our hearts. If our hearts are not completely wrapped up in worshiping, then we are not being truthful to what we are doing or to what God wants from us. Don’t ever lose sight of the fact that God wants your hearts. He doesn’t want you to mindlessly and without emotion and feeling to approach Him in worship.
“Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.” [emphasis added by me] (Deuteronomy 6:4–9, ESV)
What God really wants from you is your heart. A heart that loves Him more than what’s for lunch, more than what others are doing or not doing; a heart that is so completely in love with Him that it cannot focus on anything else but Him. He wants your complete and undying attention during worship. He wants you to be so caught up, so lost in Him, that it is your entire life, everything you speak about, so complete and pervasive that everywhere and everything you do is guided by your love for Him. He wants you to write His words and His love on every aspect of your life.
“Blessed are those who keep his testimonies, who seek him with their whole heart,”
(Psalm 119:2, ESV)
What does all of this have to do with worship? When you’re completely given to Jesus Christ and God our Father; you will be excited, you will feel something, and nothing will be more important to you than worshiping and praising your God.