When you are ‘carried away in the Spirit’ to new heights of spiritual understanding at the weekend, how do you face Monday? How do you show real care to that neighbour from hell?
Worship is more than singing and having a good time in the Spirit; by the same Spirit we live our lives on a daily basis. However, this can be the hardest thing to do at times. How does one follow through the worshipful acts performed during a weekend service for the entire week? The answer, as I see it, is simply this: you do it by remembering! Remember that you are the same person who had been in ‘seventh heaven’ only days previously, crying with joy and rapturous delight because you had been in the presence of the King. The Bible says, “[Yahshua Messiah] is the same yesterday and today and forever” (Hebrews 13:8). You are His child, you are like Him, so what would He do? Both He and you have access to the same dynamic Holy Spirit.
From my teen years I have devoted my entire life to the worship of Yahweh – sometimes I enjoy the experience, other times it’s a sacrifice. At those times I try to adopt the excellent advice of self-motivated, life coach and teacher, Joyce Meyer, and make a conscious effort to worship Yahweh ‘on purpose’. In other words, I deliberately worship Yahweh regardless of how I am feeling. He is worthy of my worship at any time! There is no activity like it, nothing draws me closer to the heart of Yahweh, nothing dispels the gloom as quickly; nothing compares with that ‘just been in His presence’ feeling, and it is the greatest witness I could ever offer to my neighbour.
The heart of worship must surely rest in the words of Yahshua: “Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshippers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for they are the kind of worshippers the Father seeks. [Yahweh] is spirit, and His worshippers must worship in spirit and in truth” (John 4:23-24). The heart of something is the centre of it. The heart of our worship should be Yahweh-centred. The songwriter says, “I’m coming back to the heart of worship and it’s all about you, it’s all about you [Yah]” (by Matt Redman). Yahweh must be worshipped and for this reason He created worshippers, you and me, to join with the angelic hosts of heaven. Worship is so important to Yahweh that the sun never sets on His worshippers. People from around the globe worship Him day and night. What a privilege to be a created, selected human being for worship!
Worship is the opposite of entertainment. Do you go to church to be ‘entertained’ or to get involved? Worship is the entire surrender of a person’s life to the Sovereign Yahweh; a life wholly available to Him, 24/7. Every part of you and me belongs to Yahshua; it is being united with Him, in spirit, that we achieve true worship. Paul writes “Do you not know that he who unites himself with a prostitute is one with her in body? For it is said, ‘The two will become one flesh.’ But he who unites himself with [Yahshua] is one with him in spirit” (1 Corinthians 6:16-17). Worship is perfected when this connection takes place.
It’s a lifelong engagement of:
To be fully engaged and focused in our worship is to become ‘carriers of Yahweh’s presence’ as were the Levites of old. Yahweh elected an entire tribal family to be ‘carriers of His presence’, meaning the Ark of the Covenant. Today’s ‘Levites’ do not carry an Ark but they bear the ‘Presence’ in mind, heart, soul, spirit and body, therefore, possessing the means by which to experience worship beyond the traditional; above the ordinary. The ‘carriers of His Presence’ will seek to worship with creative brilliance. Worship Leaders and Pastors will design and conduct every worship service to equip and inspire, especially those in the creative arts ministry. In Nottingham, the worship team practises before each meeting, but before we begin our practice we pray together asking Yahweh for cleansing, mercy, openness to hear what the Spirit would say to the congregation through our ministry. We see this as approaching the bronze laver (basin) and washing, and then we enter the Holy of Holies clean and without fear of judgement (Exodus 30:17-19 KJV).
Yahweh provided the means for His priests to be ‘made clean’ and ‘kept clean’. And so it is for us through the blood of Yahshua. “…Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, and hath made us kings and priests unto [Yahweh] and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen” (Revelation 1:5-6 KJV). At the place of the ‘bronze laver’ we receive our ‘authority’ to lead Yahweh’s people in worship.
This is a huge responsibility. We do it with the ability and anointing of the Holy Spirit. The anointing produces authority and this, in turn, produces confidence especially when we are faced with opposition. I once heard David Pawson teaching about leadership. He said wherever a person is sincerely trying to lead, there will congregate around him, those whom he termed, ‘the malcontent’ – their singular aim is to oppose. Soon they will gather a little band of supporters and their favourite phrases are: “We’ve never done it before”; or “We did it and it didn’t work!” Let nothing stand in the way of you and your worship. If you are a worship leader, lead with authority and confidence, not just through your singing and music but by the way you live your life. Worship is more than singing and all the ‘normal’ things we associate with worship. It’s a life-changing experience on a daily basis! Authentic worship creates change; when this is evident in the church, even the ‘malcontent’ will be forced to agree.
At the start of this article I asked, how do you return to living a normal, everyday life after a weekend of worship. How do you face Monday? How do you show real care to that difficult neighbour, or work colleague, friend, spouse, or children? My approach in answering these all-important questions may have seemed very simplistic; however, I am convinced that my life of worship goes on beyond church, beyond singing. Worship is a lifestyle; singing is merely one expression of my total life as a worshipper.
For just as each of us has one body with many members...