“I am of the opinion that we should not be concerned about working for God until we have learned the meaning and delight of worshiping him” A.W. Tozer.
In AW Tozer’s book “Whatever happened to worship” the writer says that, like an amnesiac, the human race experienced a dramatic fall and, as a result, we have forgotten that we were made to walk with our God and worship him. Even as Christians we can forget this and take our place in Sunday worship out of habit, duty, love of music, enjoyment of the people or atmosphere.
We must therefore learn, or re-learn, “the meaning and delight of worshiping Him”
A heart to give thanks.
The fall of mankind was characterised by a lack of worshipful gratitude – “though they knew God … they neither glorified him as God, nor gave thanks to him” (Rom 1 v 21) A prime characteristic of those restored to relationship with God, therefore, is the cultivation of a renewed attitude of gratitude
When people think of you do they think of a worshiper?Remember, the Father himself is seeking worshipers. (See John 4 v 23-4)
A heart to give our whole self.
The “first” or greatest, command is “love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind”. (Luke 10v27) Our God requires, and deserves, nothing less than wholehearted worship.
In Romans 12 v 1 Paul takes up the notion of totally giving ourselves and gives us a picture of placing our whole selves on a sacrificial altar of worship – This in a willing and joyful response to the magnificent mercy of God in choosing us and saving us by Jesus’ work on the cross.
A heart to seek Him.
In Psalm 42 v 1-2 the writer compares his hunger for God to the physical longing of a deer for water. He “pants” for God and knows that nothing less, or other, than the Lord himself can meet his thirst.
“Where can I go and meet with God?” is the great question of the worshipping heart. God has hidden things for us not from us; and he promises to be found by those who seek him wholeheartedly.
A heart to delight in Him.
What a great command – “go on, indulge yourself!” – “delight yourself in the Lord” Psalm 37 v 4
The psalmist encourages us to exalt, boast and revel in our Lord – His attributes and actions. To delight ourselves is to glorify him!
A wonderful cook is most glorified in the licking of lips, the mopping of gravy, the longing for seconds, and the salivating expectation of more!! The very enjoyment glorifies the provider all the more as the consumer delights in the feast!
In the same way we are encouraged to “delight” in the Lord – to be enraptured, delighted; to honour and esteem, applaud and shout, relish and indulge ourselves! To luxuriate and be captivated and fascinated with all He is and has done. What a privilege!
A heart to know Him
David’s primary request was to “gaze on the beauty of the Lord” Psalm 27v4
It has been fashionable to say “I do not want to know any more about the Lord ; I just want to know Him” Why settle for “either/ or” when it is the Lord’s will for you to have “both/ and”? We can cultivate our love Him with all our minds as well as all our strength and soul!
If I had said, to my future wife, “I don’t want to know anything about you I just want to experience you”, I would have been told to get lost, – and rightly so! If you love someone you want to find out their opinions, taste, family background, ambitions, gifts, character and desires.
Further earthly discovery sometimes leads to discovering areas of disappointment in one another. – BUT there is no disappointment in our God, for He is perfect and complete and His beauties are endless.
Let’s gaze on his beauty in ways that involves both learning more about him and experiencing his wonderful closeness – there will always be more to know!
OUR PERSONAL PRIORITY
Matt Redman wisely says “The private place always needs to outweigh the public place” Wherever your time and place is – do whatever it takes for you to meet with God. Developing the heart of a worshipper is the best thing you can do to glorify God and enrich the worship of your church.
Thank Him, give yourself to Him, seek Him, delight in Him, know Him!
“If we give ourselves to God’s call to worship, everyone will do more than he or she is doing now. It will have the quality of eternity in it. It will be gold, silver and precious stones, not wood hay or stubble” A.W. Tozer.