Monday, May 14, 2012

The Heart Of Worship by Tiffany Ann Lewis

       This article was a recent post from the Elijah List's email newsletter.  It is a great reminder that God wants our hearts.   What we often call worship--singing songs to and about Him--can be an expression of worship, but true worship involves total surrender of our hearts and lives to His Lordship and that can be expressed in many ways.


"But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth." John 4:23-24

In America, we are living in a day where there is a church on every corner. Leaders have provided a smorgasbord for seekers to choose from in order to connect with their Creator and grow in a meaningful relationship with Jesus. Sadly though, Goldilocks is still not satisfied. She can't find the church that is "just right".

The above passage of Scripture comes from a precious conversation Jesus had with a Samaritan woman at a well. She asked Jesus "where" to worship, however, Jesus replied with "how" to worship. Unfortunately the "how" is often determined by the "where" but it doesn't have to be so, beloved.

The hour is coming and I believe now is, that true worshipers will worship the Father no matter where they are. It won't matter if the lights are bright, dim or flashing. It won't matter if the worship is fast, loud, professional and planned, or slow, quiet, simple and spontaneous. The worshiper with a true heart of worship will be able to worship the Father in spirit and truth, despite any outward hindrances because the Spirit of God who reveals all truth dwells inside of them.
True Worship
You see, worship is not a musical expression, therefore true worship does not have to be affected by the atmosphere around us. In Greek, the word for worship that Jesus is talking about is expressed by falling to one's knees, bowing before a Superior in humility and submission or to kiss the hand in respect and reverence.

In Luke 7, we see a sinful woman standing behind Jesus weeping. She then washed His feet with her own tears and wiped them with her hair. She kissed His feet, which is much less respectful than kissing the hand, yet in this one act she demonstrated a genuine act of worship. She knew the Truth and He set her free so that no matter what was happening around her she was going to worship her Savior.

We see another cry of genuine worship in the Old Testament coming from the prophet Job. After losing everything precious to him, Job declares, "The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD" (Job 1:21b). After all, Job continues to say, "Shall we indeed accept good from God, and shall we not accept adversity?" (Job 2:10).

Beloved, when we go to work and find a pink slip waiting for us, God is still God and worthy of our worship. When we come home and find our spouse has left us, when the cancer has returned, when everything is falling apart, God is still God and worthy of our worship. He alone can hold us secure in this storm and so, at His feet, may we fall.

Selah...

"Because Your lovingkindness is better than life, my lips shall praise You." Psalm 63:3
There is a beautiful revelation in the Hebrew word used here for praise that brings this home for me. The Hebrew word used here for praise is not your typical word for praise, this one is shabach (Strong's #7623). While shabach means: to commend, praise, adore, or to glory in something, interestingly, it also means to still, quiet or pacify someone. Therefore, proceeding from a heart of worship, shabach can be seen in two dimensions: praising or calming. This reveals that praising God has the power to soothe our screaming soul.

True worshippers are those who earnestly love God with all their heart, soul and strength despite the circumstances. Falling at the feet of Jesus, worshiping the One who is worthy of all our praise, we will be filled with the Holy Spirit and the truth of His outrageous love for us. From this posture, although we are hard-pressed on every side, we can worship knowing we will not be totally crushed. When we are perplexed and confused we can adore Him because we are not in despair. We can kiss His feet although we feel forsaken, yet knowing the truth, He promised He would never leave or abandon us.

Amen and Amen.
Tiffany Ann Lewis
Dancing with the Flame of the Lord Ministries

Email: tiffanyann@tiffanyannlewis.com

1 comment:

Mike Taylor said...

Very good. Worship brings true peace and confidence in Him after we have met Him. I get loaded up with stuff to do and think. I really liked your article. I know what it means to have been forgiven and accepted by Him...now I practice humility before Him. There are so many things that need prayer daily. I know that He is in control and He said to cast ALL our cares on Him. I have seen Him work many many times as I have taken time to meet with Him. Many many things in my life would not have been so smoothed out if He had not done it! That is a daily place to begin the kissing of His feet posture. Good writing...keep blessing.