By Esther Winchell
In the life of a Christian, worship is a necessary discipline in developing a relationship with our Maker and Savior.
HOW DID I LEARN ABOUT REAL WORSHIP?
There were times before taking classes through Artios Christian College (formerly, LifeSpring School of Ministry) when I believed that worship was only what happened at church with the song service and corporate prayers. Boy, was I wrong! In addition to those thoughts, worship songs were slow and praise songs were upbeat because that was what I was taught. Wrong again!
When I first began my studies, I could sense that I needed to make changes in my thought processes.
Worship doesn’t just happen once a week at a church service, but every day of my life!
WE NEED REAL WORSHIP!
We all were created to worship God. It is our expression to the Almighty that comes from a true spirit-filled heart. Our heart will feel empty unless it is filled with deep praise, and praise is essential in the life of a believer. We need real worship!
In the words of the songwriter, Matt Redman:
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
DON’T JUST GO THROUGH THE MOTIONS.
In true worship, we need to do more than just open our mouths and sing along with the congregation. Our minds and hearts must be set on the Lord, and our entire being must be engaged in humble submission to our Maker. We are amid exaltation to the King. Be true to the words that you are praising Him with and don’t just go through the motions.
Is there that one song that touches your heart to the point of bringing tears to your eyes because the lyrics are ones that touch the innermost part of your soul and heart? It is not just singing along, but an actual message that could tell God how you are feeling because of who He is and what He has done in your life. That is real worship!
We can read in John 4:23 about what we are to be or become, “Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks.” (NIV)
OUR PRAYER LIFE IS ALSO ESSENTIAL.
I believe we all need growth in this area, and it is best learned in our time with the Lord. Our prayer life is also essential because talking and revealing our hearts is the first step. After all, He already knows you, so why not tell Him so? If you’re not a singer, turn your iPod on and meditate on the praise song that will come up. Really let it sink in and worship the Lord with all your heart, soul and mind. There are times I get so lost in my worship at home that tears come to my eyes.
When I began my studies, I also did not have a great prayer life, but Artios showed me how to make time and make it one of my disciplines. There were so many opportunities that I had let slip through my hand when I could and should have been praying instead.
WORSHIP INCLUDES PRAYER, AND PRAYER INCLUDES WORSHIP.
Worship includes prayer, and prayer includes worship. When you begin to incorporate them both into your life, you will see a relationship developing that will cause an intimate and personal bond that only you and the Father will have.
Through the Worship Arts and Prayer classes, Artios recommends some books that you will keep at your desk or bedside. They include so many examples and reasons that help you get further into developing these disciplines. You won’t regret it! Through these studies, you will see what you can enhance, refresh, or even begin in your Christian walk.
And, don’t forget, “long to bring something that is of worth to bless the Lord.”