Oh come, let us worship and bow down; let us kneel before the Lord, our Maker!PSALM 95:6 ESV
William Temple (archbishop of Canterbury) said, “For worship is the submission of all our nature to God. It is the quickening of conscience by His holiness; the nourishment of mind with His truth; the purifying of imagination by His beauty; the opening of the heart to His love; the surrender of will to His purpose—and all of this gathered up in adoration, the most selfless emotion of which our nature is capable and therefore the chief remedy for that self-centeredness which is our original sin and the source of all actual sin.”
When we think of making worship a priority in our life, as well as when we look at trying to insert it into our devotional life, we think of music and singing songs. Music and singing songs can both be prayers we pray as well as it is an act of worship, but music and songs themselves do not actually capture the full definition of worship. Worship comes from the idea of bowing down or paying homage to someone that is worthy. We are to come before the Lord our God with great humility and position our hearts to God with great reverence. Worshippers realize that He is God, maker of Heaven and Earth! He is our King! Master! He is worthy of our adoration, worship, submission, and service. The posture (position) of worship is bowing down, but the very act of worship is OBEDIENCE. This can be done in singing and playing music as one expression of worship, but here is not a higher call from our God than to obey. Obedience to His word, His spirit, His authority, His instructions make up the very core of our worship-life before Him.
The focus of our worship is God. There’s a story about a man who, leaving church one Sunday, complained about the music. “I didn’t like the hymns you chose today,” he said. The pastor simply replied, “That’s OK; we weren’t singing them for you.” The pastor may have been too blunt, but he made a good point. In our consumer-oriented world, we sometimes think church services are just for us; but we aren’t spectators attending a show—we’re participants in the greatest and most uplifting enterprise in the universe: worshiping God! Though we are blessed in doing it, our worship is not for ourselves, but for Him. We are praising God for His power, His glory, His majesty, His wisdom, His holiness, His goodness, and His grace.
William Temple put it well in his definition of worship: “To worship is to quicken the conscience by the holiness of God, to purge the imagination by the beauty of God, to open the heart to the love of God, and to devote the will to the purpose of God” (Turning Point Daily Devotional, 8-12-05).
So, you may be asking right now, how do I layer in worship as a part of my private devotional life? We all pretty much get the idea of prayer, we get the idea of reading the Word, but exactly what is it that we do to worship in our devotional time? It is the bowing down of the heart; it is taking time to submit our desires, our will, and our plans before God. We do pay homage to Him by singing (using music or not). Singing and music are acts of worship that allow us to bow down, humble ourselves, and give adoration that is due to Him! His word teaches that we are to come before the Lord singing hymns and spiritual songs to Him! The very act of doing these things is obedience to His word. We also realize that obeying His commands and living an obedient life to His word, is just as much and maybe even more so, worship!
So, when you get to that time of worship in your private time with the Lord, keep in mind the posture of bowing down. If you live a life bowed down, you will always please the Lord with your life and have His favor as a worshipping child of the King! Your singing and your music becomes true worship when your heart is a bowed down! Today let’s commit to being worshippers and live a life that flows from our bowing down before Him!
Lord Jesus, Today I want to learn to be a worshipper. I want to learn the discipline of bowing down. I make a commitment to day to submit my life to You, to obey You, and to live a life of adoration! You are worthy of my praise and I worship you Lord!IN JESUS NAME! AMEN!
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- Bible Reading (Devos) (5 times / week)
- Private Prayer (5 times / week)
- Private Worship (5 times / week)
- Journaling (2-3 times / week)
- Supplemental Reading (2-3 times / week)