THE WORSHIP SERVICE
"I was glad when they said to me, 'Let us go up to the house of the Lord'" (Psa. 122:1). It seems that we are losing our sense of delight and enthusiasm when it comes to worshiping with the people of God. What a grand opportunity that we have been offorded, yet we often dread its coming instead of rejoicing with what it brings. We owe it to ourselves and to the Lord to give Him the very best of what we have to offer on His day.
Be Here: There is no way that you can benefit or be benefitt- ed if you choose not to come to the services of the church. The purpose of worship is not only to praise and express gratitude to our God, it is to draw closer to one another as we draw closer to Him. By being here, you demonstrate your interest in spiritual things and your desire to please Him; showing up, however, is not the only thing required of you.
Be Prepared: This speaks not only of the need to prepare your lesson for Bible class, but to prepare your mind. We go to great lengths to watch what we put into our body, but take no thought as to what our minds are exposed to. Let's not pollute our senses or the house of God with such immoral and filthy thoughts that are prevalent in the world today. Rather, let's come into His presence with prepared hearts and minds for worship.
Be Reverent: Remember what you're doing. This is not some sporting contest or entertainment event, this is a worship service. We are communing with the same God that spoke the world into existence, created man from the dust of the ground, and authorized the plan of salvation. Does He not deserve our utmost respect and admiration? "Let us show gratitude, by which we offer to God an acceptable service with reverence and awe" (Heb. 12: 28).
Be A Participant: Nothing is more discouraging to the song leader than one who does not sing and to the preacher than one who does not listen. More importantly, the Lord is displeased with one who does not participate in the services. "I will give thanks to the Lord with all my heart in the company of the upright and in the assembly" (Psa. 111:1). Acceptable worship means whole-hearted worship and making an effort to be an active participant in the activities of the services. Just because you are not the one leading the singing, say the prayers, or doing the preaching or teaching does not mean your duties are relinquished. Be in tune with what is going on.
Worship is a commandment, worship is a blessing, and worship is a choice. You will get no more out of the services of the church than what you put into them. Give the Lord your very best today and receive the best of what worship has to offer you.
By Bubba Garner in Gospel Power, Vol. 11, No. 1, Jan. 4, 2004.
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