Choosing to Worship
"But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him." John 4:23
In this life, we have an ability to choose to worship which we will never have again. When God brings final restoration to all things and we live in perfect communion with him, we will see him and know him fully. In heaven, worship will not be a choice. It will be the natural response of all of creation to the full revelation of God. Revelation 5:11-14 depicts this image:
Then I looked, and I heard around the throne and the living creatures and the elders the voice of many angels, numbering myriads of myriads and thousands of thousands, saying with a loud voice, “Worthy is the Lamb who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing!” And I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and in the sea, and all that is in them, saying, “To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be blessing and honor and glory and might forever and ever!” And the four living creatures said, “Amen!” and the elders fell down and worshiped.
God loves our worship here. John 4:23 says, “But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him.” Did you know that God is seeking your worship? It delights the heart of your Father when you desire to encounter him, know him, and give him your affections. There is nothing he loves more than communion with us.
When we choose to worship God here on earth, we are declaring to the Father and all of creation that he is King of kings and Lord of lords, and that he is our true ambition. To worship God here is to crown him as Lord of your life, come underneath his leadership, and make him first priority. What we do with our limited time here on earth has the power to affect the heart of God for all eternity. And living a lifestyle of worship instead of choosing the things of the world has the power to guide others into relationship with the Father, thereby changing the nature of their eternities forever.
Gathering together to worship with fellow believers is no small or fleeting task if we will take time to ask God what it does to his heart. Every time we gather together to worship, we can move the heart of our Father. We have the ability here on earth to delight our Creator. He sent Jesus to die that we might walk in communion with him. Our worship and pursuit of relationship with God is the reward for the unmerited suffering of our Savior. Every word we sing from our hearts matters. Every person we love is music to the ears of our Father. Every act of worship has eternal significance.
Take time in guided prayer to allow God to reveal his longing for your worship. Allow Scripture to fill you with a desire to worship with your life. Crown God as King and Lord and live to satisfy your God’s desire for continual, intimate relationship with you.
1. Meditate on the value of your worship here on earth. Allow Scripture and God’s presence to stir you up to live a lifestyle of devoted worship right now.
“You have said, ‘Seek my face.’ My heart says to you, ‘Your face, Lord, do I seek.'” Psalm 27:8
“Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name; worship the Lord in the splendor of holiness.” Psalm 29:2
“Then I looked, and I heard around the throne and the living creatures and the elders the voice of many angels, numbering myriads of myriads and thousands of thousands, saying with a loud voice, ‘Worthy is the Lamb who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing!’ And I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and in the sea, and all that is in them, saying, ‘To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be blessing and honor and glory and might forever and ever!’ And the four living creatures said, ‘Amen!’ and the elders fell down and worshiped.” Revelation 5:11-14
2. What have you been pursuing above worshipping God? What is keeping you from doing everything in your life as an act of worship?
3. Ask God to show you how much he loves your worship. Ask him to help you live a lifestyle of worship, daily surrendering all you do to him as an act of praise and love. Rest in his presence and spend time simply being with him.
Mark 14 describes for us an inspiring story of worship. Mark 14:3-6 says, “And while he was at Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, as he was reclining at table, a woman came with an alabaster flask of ointment of pure nard, very costly, and she broke the flask and poured it over his head. There were some who said to themselves indignantly, ‘Why was the ointment wasted like that? For this ointment could have been sold for more than three hundred denarii and given to the poor.’ And they scolded her. But Jesus said, ‘Leave her alone. Why do you trouble her? She has done a beautiful thing to me.'” And then later in verse 9 Jesus says, “And truly, I say to you, wherever the gospel is proclaimed in the whole world, what she has done will be told in memory of her.” This woman’s worship affected eternity. Her story of devotion and affection for Jesus has inspired countless Christians. May we live like this woman. May we give all that we have in love and devotion to the King who gave everything for us.
Extended Reading: Psalm 27