"Be on guard. Stand firm in the faith. Be courageous. Be strong. And do everything with love."
1 Corinthians 16:13-14
We can all demonstrate true worship in our lives.
Do you ever feel that God has asked something of you or placed you in a situation that you don't feel equipped to handle? Or that you are just not ready for? We can often feel caught off guard. In my own ministry as a Worship Leader, and especially at the start, I have navigated these waters. But one message still remains clear; we need to stop relying on ourselves and learn to rely on God. Remain humble, it is then that we really hear what He is saying to us, where He reveals more to us.
Is beyond our ability right where God wants us? In our anxiousness, our wilderness? Remember the words of Philippians 4:13, "For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength." When Jesus came upon the crowd of 5000, he instructed the disciples to feed the multitude. They couldn't see how a young boys packed lunch could feed such a gathering. Taking the five loaves and two fish, Jesus, looking up to heaven, gave thanks and broke the loaves, gave them to the disciples, and instructed them to distribute the food among the people. And what do we discover? That not only was there enough, but an abundance! We need to stand firm in our faith, seek prayer and encouragement, and, like the disciples, we may achieve our impossible.
Webster's Dictionary, 1828, describes worship as "to honour with extravagant love and extreme submission." To put it another way, true worship is defined by the priority we place on who God is in our lives, and where God is on our list of priorities. As a church family, we are studying the Rule of Life introduced by Bishop Paul:
We are called to pray, read and learn.
The priority on who God is in our lives.
We are sent to tell, serve and give.
Where God is on our list of priorities.
At St. Andrews we are blessed with so many thriving ministries. Seek His courage and strength in how to live out an attitude of worship in your daily life. It may be mission, or simply greeting a stranger in church. It may be an exciting new calling, or just to offer support to someone in need.
Do Everything in Love. Let's not concern ourselves with the perception of the size of our ministry, calling, or gift. We all have something to give. Give it freely and in love. Give it because God wants us to show that love to the world.
We worship God because He is God. God is love. Living out that love day by day, showing that love to family and friends, to colleague and neighbour... that is worship. And this is the promise of worship: that when we worship, not because we have to, not because we need something, but because we want to... God will commune with us.
So, what is true worship? It's not a secret! It's not something that is reserved for those who are musical, gifted in preaching or who can pray aloud. It's something we can all do. It's allowing God into our hearts, being our very best selves, demonstrating His love through our actions and by the gifts He has given to us. We don't always achieve this, but strive for it nonetheless.
We may not all be missionaries, preachers, or natural leaders, but we are all worship leaders with gifts to bring to a world in need. It doesn't need to be in the grandest of gestures, it can be in the smallest of offerings. We can all demonstrate true worship by the simplest acts of kindness. So, if we are all capable of this, and with nothing to stop us, what better time is there to start?