Over the last several Wednesdays, we’ve looked at different ways to respond to and become more connected with God, such as quiet time, prayer, and Bible study. We often refer to them as spiritual disciplines, but all of them are also forms of worship—ways to acknowledge that we serve a great God, to recognize God’s “worth-ship.” They get us out of our own way so we can see and appreciate God for who he is. Our worship declares that God is God—and we aren’t. And thank God for that!
As we’ve looked at these different approaches to worship, you’ve probably been more naturally drawn toward certain ones rather than others. Or maybe you just can’t wait for Sunday service, so you can let it all out. The good news is: These are all legitimate ways to worship God! And while we should use all of them—and other ways as well—we shouldn’t ignore that God has built each of us to connect with him in our own unique way. So let’s learn more about how we can worship God the way He’s already wired us, and what keeps us from going there.
So, here’s a whole list of questions to consider:
• When you think of worship, what comes to mind for you?
• Out of those answers, which ones do you think most fit God’s idea of worship? What other answers can you come up with?
• Do you normally think of worship more as a shared experience or a personal one? Why?
• Can worship be both shared and personal at the same time?
• Which activities help you connect with God the most? Why?
• Think about a meaningful time or season of worship you’ve had in the past—of any kind. What made it so meaningful to you?
• How has your idea of what worship is (and isn’t) changed during the course of your Christian life? How has your own worship before God changed, as a result?
It’s amazing how God meets us where we’re at, and uses what we have and who we are. At the same time, we shouldn’t be surprised—God made us the way we are. So let’s start making our way to the end of this… the very end:
“Then a voice came from the throne, saying:
“‘Praise our God
all you his servants,
and all you who fear Him,
both the small and the great!’
“Then I heard what sounded like the voice of a vast throng, like the roar of many waters and like loud crashes of thunder. They were shouting:
For the Lord our God, the All-Powerful, reigns!
Let us rejoice and exult
and give him glory,
because the wedding celebration of the Lamb has come,
and his bride has made herself ready.
She was permitted to be dressed in bright, clean, fine linen’ (for the fine linen is the righteous deeds of the saints).
“Then the angel said to me, ‘Write the following: Blessed are those who are invited to the banquet at the wedding celebration of the Lamb!’ He also said to me, ‘These are the true words of God.’ So I threw myself down at his feet to worship him, but he said, ‘Do not do this! I am only a fellow servant with you and your brothers who hold to the testimony about Jesus. Worship God, for the testimony about Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.’—Revelation 19:5-10 (NET)
Put yourself in the middle of this passage—go from being an observer to a participant, because that’s what you’ll be one day. Does this scene excite you, make you uncomfortable, or does it just not resonate with you at all? Why?
By the same token, how does (or should) knowing our eternal future with Jesus help us make worship—however we do it—a higher priority in our lives right now?
It’s more than a little remarkable to think about, but it’s important to remember that our lives are prep time for eternity. At this very time in our lives, we’re being prepared to live forever in God’s presence. Just thinking about that will help us look at our lives here differently, so reflect on that this week.