A Picture of Worship

worship

Hello friends, I have a great post for you today.
Today I want to provide for you a picture of worship.  As we do this I want to provide the following definition of worship.
    Worship is any act of adoration, exultation, or praise.  For Christians this is expected to be directed at God but humans worship many things.  Some examples would be: athletes, musicians, celebrities, food, technology, or our significant other.  In most cases when we talk about worship you usually are referring to singing with music in a church setting., but it can incorporate a great deal of activities including but not limited to: singing, instrumental music, dance, painting, spoken words, spoken word poetry, sculpting, and so on.
     Worship is giving God the praise He deserves because He is King, because He is Holy, because He is just, because He is righteous, because loves us, because He saved us, and a whole slew of other things.
     Worship can be looked at as a duty but I believe the picture above captures the bidirectional nature of worship.  Before I talk about this some more I want to share a story about some time I spent reading my Bible one day.
     The other day I learned something as I was reading Song of Songs chapters 1 & 2 that really grated my intellect.  As I was reading I was thinking of it through to lenses that this interaction between a man and his betrothed signified: 1 a picture of romance for marriage, and 2 a picture of God’s love for us.  As I was reading I was noticing themes of mutual desire, delight, and adoration being expressed between this man and this woman.  It dawned on me that if this is a picture of God’s love for us (which marriage is and this is definitely a picture for marriage see Ephesians 5) then God desires, delights in, and adores me.  And He is expressing this through His word and probably in other ways I don’t notice as I rush through my day.  What I get here is that while we are worshiping God He is also worshiping us.  Worship is bidirectional.  This was a hard idea for me to accept.  God is awesome, He is holy, righteous, pure, mighty, and powerful.  It seemed wrong to say that He praises or worships me.  But think on the cross He was saying I love you this much, this is how valuable you are to Me.  He says that we are His masterpiece, that we are fearfully and wonderfully made, and that we are His treasure and a pearl of great price ( Ephesians 2:10, Psalm 139:14,Matt 13:44-46)
     Another picture used in the Bible to help us to understand and relate to God is that of our Heavenly Father, Abba Father, or Daddy God (Romans 8:15 Galatians 4:6, Matthew 7:7-11, Luke 15:11-32, 1 John 3:1 and more).  As a father of 6 I can understand this in a much more powerful way than before I had children.  Currently I am going through OSL level 1 (Operation Solid Lives).  During the class time we are watching a series called “The Love of God” in which Jerry Dirmann brings to life how much God and Jesus loves.  The first session titled “Love From the Very First Chapter” talks about this beautiful world that God created loaded with things that are here simply for us to enjoy; the beauty of nature, sweet smelling aromas, colors, a variety of enjoyable foods, and so forth.  In the beginning He placed Adam and Eve in a beautiful garden and told them to have fun enjoy the delicious fruit and to stay away from the one tree that could ruin it all.  One day the Lord came walking through the garden to talk with them, and something was wrong they were hiding.  They had been tricked by the serpent (Satan) into eating from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, the tree previously mentioned.  A curse came upon the devil, Adam, Eve, and all of creation, the ability of man to fellowship with God was severed, and the Heart of God was broken, as His babies were taken away in chains, doomed to an eternity in torment (see my post caged babies).  Unable to tolerate this God includes in the curse upon the serpent an allusion of the rescue plan to later be fulfilled.
I will put enmity between you and the woman,
    and between your offspring and her offspring;
he shall bruise your head,
    and you shall bruise his heel.” (Genesis 3:15, ESV)
We know now that this head bruising offspring is Jesus Christ.
“For God so loved the world,that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. (John 3:16, ESV)
 And this is eternal life, that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent. (John 17:3, ESV)
Jesus came and died in our place so that we can know Him and God.  He allowed Himself to be tortured, mocked, and killed in our place so that He could be with us forever.
What we see in this brief look at this is that God and Jesus really want to spend time with us.  In a healthy father child relationship we see this at work.  We see a child who is elated when daddy’s car pulls in the drive.  Personally I often come home to a bunch of smiling faces peering through the glass of the storm door when I come home.  There is a smile that comes across my face when they laugh or do something silly.  There are protective aggressive emotions that are activated when someone hurts them.  There is a sadness that comes when they are hurting or sick.  I shed tears when my daughter was so sick she was hospitalized.  My love for my children is a shadow of God’s love for us/me.
In the future I will write more on this, so, be on the look out for the upcoming post “In My Daddy’s Arms” for more about this.
As we come to a close I want to talk about this following verse.
You make known to me the path of life;
    in your presence there is fullness of joy;
    at your right hand are pleasures forevermore. (Psalm 16:11, ESV)
Jesus paid the price for us to have eternal life, to know God and Jesus, in whose presence is fullness of Joy.  When I hold my daughter and spend time with her there is joy.  When we spend time with God in worship, we are stopping everything else to be with Him.  And in those moments we often sense Him near.  One of the things I have learned is that we can use our imagination to help us visualize what we know to be true.
Hebrews 4:16 says, Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need (ESV).  Also Hebrews 10:19, Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the holy places by the blood of Jesus, (ESV).
Do you not know that you[c] are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in you? (1 Corinthians 3:16, ESV)
If we believe in Jesus He comes and lives inside of us and gives access to His throne room. Knowing this I would often imagine myself standing before Him.  On day while I was at church camp I was imagining as I worshiping a portal in the distance where I saw God seated on His throne with the six winged angels around Him (Isaiah 6, Revelation 4).  I’m not sure how it shifted but I was closer as if I was standing in front of Him worshiping.  What if when we worshiped we all did this or something like it.  I encourage you to do more than just sing, worry about life, worry about how you sound, or whatever and picture the truth, that He is there waiting eagerly to meet with you.
 I leave you with two things.  Another glimpse at the picture of me and my daughter as an example or intimate worship with the Father and the song “Good Good Father” by Chris Tomlin

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