April 13, 2014 | Jon Graybeal, Director of Worship
As a child, I believed that worship was something confined within the walls of a church, reserved for a particular people at a particular hour on Sunday morning and that the only mode by which to express said worship was through music. The truth that God continually leads me to, however, is that worship has no confines. It is neither bound by space nor time and most importantly, it is not something set aside for the saints. Worship is something that finds us all. We are all worshipers. Its inevitable, something or someone is always going to attract our attentions and affections. Louie Giglio in his book “The Air I Breathe” puts it this way, “Whatever we value most will ultimately determine who we are and what or who we worship. If we worship money, we become greedy at the core of our heart. If we worship some sinful habit, that same sin will grip our soul and poison our character. If we worship stuff, our life will become material, void of eternal significance.” What we worship, what we love, we become.
The truth that we are all worshipers takes on an even greater significance as a Christ follower. Worship isn’t confined to a 20 minute experience once a week on Sunday morning, but rather worship is the way by which we, as Christ followers, express ourselves to God, individually and as a church. Worship is a practice that forms us into Christlikeness. Realizing the significance of worship as a Christ follower should change us. The goal becomes not to simply get the church to raise their hands, clap, sing louder, sing the right songs or feel good when they walk out of the doors on Sunday morning, but for the church to become the kinds of people who use their hands for good the rest of the week. The goal is not simply to create a worship service, but for our worship service to create a certain kind of church in the world.
Perhaps the psalmist says it best in Psalm 115. “Not to us, O Lord, not to us, but to Your name be glory, because of Your love and faithfulness.” The Psalmist goes on to contrast this first verse by exposing the idols and gods that we tend to give our attention and affection to.
“Their gods are metal and wood, handmade in a basement shop:
Carved mouths that can’t talk,
Painted eyes that can’t see,
Tin ears that can’t hear,
Molded noses that can’t smell,
Hands that can’t grasp,
Feet that can’t walk or run,
Throats that never utter a sound.”
And to sum it all up in verse 8, ”Those who make them have become just like them, they have become just like the gods in which they trust.” Whatever we worship, and we all worship something, we become. We become what we love. So in the immortal words of Mr. Bo Diddley, “Who do you love?”