One of the most common terms a Christian hears throughout their life is Worship. It is so common in the Christian lifestyle, that we have started naming our liturgies after it. Be it the early morning worship and devotion or the all-night worship service, we have incorporated worship into all aspects of our Christian life.
But in the middle of all of this, we seem to have restricted worship to a confined box, to those three songs that we sing before the sermon begins. In our hearts and minds, we have restricted it to that slow song at the end of the singing section which makes us emotional before we are allowed to take our seats.
But the Bible has a different definition of worship. The Lord God Almighty himself is said to be enthroned on the praises of his people. Here are a few tips on figuring out if we are involved in authentic worship or just playing karaoke in church.
True worship is spontaneous
We need not wait for the worship leader on stage to call us out to worship the Lord.
And I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and in the sea, and all that is in them, saying: “To Him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise and honor and glory and power forever and ever!” And the four living creatures said, “Amen,” and the elders fell down and worshiped. Revelation 5:13-14
When we experience the presence of God, when we remember His goodness and think about His mercy, we should be transported to a place of worship in our hearts. True Worship is not an organized event, rather it is spontaneous. Like a spring that bubbles out of nowhere, so should praise and worship spring from our hearts.
True worship is devoted solely to God
One of the meanings of the word 'Worship' translates to "Devotion". True worship is devoted only to God and God alone. He alone is worthy of our worship. We cannot say that we partake in true worship if our mind is torn between devotion to God and devotion to the things of this world.
Do not worship any other god, for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God. Exodus 34:14
It should come from a place of absolute love and humility. When we truly worship our Lord, we disregard every other thing that may be vying for our attention. It is not just the external lifting of our hands, but the external actions should be a reflection of the total surrender of our hearts.
True worship is a lifestyle
Worship is not a temporary event. It is not time-bound. Worship in heaven goes on forever. God expects that even on earth, we live our lives as a vessel of worship to Him. True worship is holy. It is entirely set apart for God. When our lives are completely set as a sacrifice to the Lord, not just our songs and devotion but our lives become worship itself. It is such worship that becomes a sweet aroma to the Lord.
Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Romans 12:1
We who have been redeemed by the precious blood of the Lamb and are being led by the Spirit of God have every right to boldly worship Him. So let us take up this privilege that has been graciously given to us to warm up our worship muscles on earth in anticipation of the glorious celebrations in heaven
But an hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for such people the Father seeks to be His worshipers. John 4:23