For the past seven weeks I have had no voice. Those who know me well know I love to sing. I sing pretty much most of the day songs of praise and worship to my King. Since losing my voice, I have really struggled as I have not been able to sing, hum, or even whisper in tune. I have found this very difficult.
Yet, in the midst of this, my heart still cries out in praise to the Lord. I cannot help but whisper the words out loud as I hear them playing in the background.
Frustration set in. Annoyed at the fact I cannot sing out to God.
A song came to me by Matt Redman:
“I’m Coming Back to the Heart of Worship”
“When the music fades and all is stripped away and I simply come, longing just to bring something that’s of worth that will bless your heart. I’ll bring you more than a song for a song in itself is not what you have required. You search much deeper within through the ways things appear; you’re looking into my heart.”
So, what is worship? The dictionary says worship is reverent honour and homage paid to God or a sacred personage, or to any object regarded as sacred.
Many churches, including our own, say there is a part of the service that is praise and worship. The songs are written to gear our thoughts towards the Trinity. Some lift hands. Some people dance. Some people sing. Some people just stand still. Some fuss about the songs saying they are not proper songs because they are not hymns or Salvation Army songs from the songbook. (Pettiness about songs, styles of services, etc quenches the Spirit, we need to let go of our personal desires and let God be God).
However, the songs are not just worship. Worship includes the fellowship outside the sanctuary when we first come in the building. Worship is the announcements, tithes, singing, reading and hearing the Word of God, the sermon, and the last goodbyes.
Worship is our everyday living. Worship includes our conversations with each other. Worship is work. Worship is praying.
Simply put, our lives as a whole should be an act of worship to God in how we live. Our lives should give reverent honour and homage to God.
We were created to worship. If we don’t worship God, we will worship something/someone else.
The way to know what or who we are worshipping is to ask ourselves the following questions:
- What do I talk about the most to others?
- What is my reason for living?
- What takes up my time and efforts?
- What/who is the most important to me?
I have discovered since losing my voice in a very poignant way that I worship God in many different ways and it’s not just by singing songs. I pray my life will be a pleasing act of worship to God, my Father and my King.
Worship invites God’s glory to be with us. When we worship, we put God first, allowing his presence to fill us. When we daily live our lives in worship, we bring God’s presence with us to the weekly church services. If we want to experience God’s tangible presence at church, we have to worship the Lord every day of the week.
I will close with some quotes about worship. May these quotes speak to our hearts and challenge us. God bless you.
- Worship is not music. Worship can be anything from painting to feeding the poor. Worship is the natural response to the love of Jesus. Some people create. Some people sing, others will love other people as a result. Whatever it is, it will cost you something. Worship is sacrifice. –J R Bermuda
- When we truly worship the Lord, we absorb His person. We drink in His attributes. When we do, He realigns our reality. He rearranges our perspective. -Roland Jones
- We ought to come to worship expecting first and foremost to see God. We come to encounter His glory, to be awestruck by His majesty. A worship service isn’t the place to showcase human talent but the place for God to showcase His divine treasure. We gather not to be impressed by one another – how we sound, what we wear, who we are – but to be impressed by God and His mighty acts of salvation. We come to sing of who He is and what He’s done. We come to hear His voice resounding in and through His Word. We come to feel the grief of our sin so that we can taste the glory of His salvation. We gather to be magnificently defeated, flattened, and shrunk by the power and might of the living God. -Tullian Tchividjian
- The supreme act of worship is not giving money, attending church or singing hymns, but giving oneself (Rom. 12:1-2). As a “holy priesthood,” believers are “to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ” (1 Pet. 2:5), the most important of which is themselves. Only when it is from a devout life, given to Christ wholly, does financial giving become an acceptable act of worship. -John MacArthur
- On Sundays God wants us to do more than sing songs together and have wonderful worship experiences. He wants to knit the fabric of our lives together. For many, church has become all about me – what I’m learning, what I’m seeking, what I’m desperate for, what I need, how I’ve been affected, what I can do. We see ourselves as isolated individuals all seeking personal encounters with God, wherever we can find them. Sadly, this reflects our individualistic, me-obsessed culture. Rather than seeing ourselves as part of a worship community, we become worship consumers. We want worship on demand, served up in our own time, and with our own music. -Bob Kauflin
- In order to worship, this relationship with God our Father must be a reality in our lives, so that our worship is not dependent on the things that can be seen-the buildings, ceremonies, rituals and trappings of religion that can so easily become a substitute for a personal knowledge of God. Worship that depends on the externals for its existence is not real worship at all; true worship is what you have left when the externals are taken away. This does not mean that certain aids to worship are not valid and useful, but they are useless without the internal reality. -Graham Kendrick