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worship, as i see it

i have often told people that for me "worship" is "taking me from the streets, to the face of God." in worship, i desire to get closer to God and feel God moving in my life. but as any good worship leader will tell you, and any good pastor will back up, there is no way anyone can do that for you, but you. worship starts with us, and our desire to go before God.

this morning at 247connection i was speaking about "what it means to worship?" part of the core of the discussion was based on the hebrew word "giyl" [gheel] which means both "to rejoice" and to "tremble in fear" [the other part was based on the hebrew word "shabach" [shaw-bakh] which means praise and be still]. how cool is that? the same word for rejoice also means tremble. but in the church we are very happy to explore the idea of "rejoice," but hey, let's be honest, "tremble in fear" is not a good marketing stance to sell to prospective followers. we have turned worship into a "worship experience" with really cool music, cool teachings [if i do say so myself], great programs and short catchy lines designed to "grab the person and get your message across." think about it, it is easy to "sell" a God with "happy, happy, joy, joy" then it is with "work out your salvation in fear and trembling." the key is to find the balance. i believe only looking at the "rejoicing" leads us to some very "bad theology" for worship [as looking at only fear and trembling will lead to bad theology]. i love the fact that both concepts are in one word.

here are a few i think are the most hurtful - and if you can think of more, please add them to in the comments:

the "i have am not being fed" worship line.
i love this one. i have often wondered how we as christians can come into a worship service, sit in the worship service and then demand to be served. what it is saying,in my mind, is "i am the most important thing in a worship experience and i must feel like i am getting something out of the experience for it to be valid" - but that is very bad theology. the reason? simply, when we worship we are to suppose to be going to God; God is the direct result of worship. the idea of "feed me" says, "i come first, God comes second." worship is not to "feed you" worship is to bring glory to God. to think "we must be fed" implies that God is not "feeding us" - because worship has nothing to do with the music, the lesson, the programs - but it has everything to do with our attitude towards worship and our desire to reach the face of God.

the "this persons actions are stopping me from worshiping" worship line.
i have heard people blame the worship leader, the pastor, children, old people, young people, poor people, black people, asian people, hispanic people and even the person sitting next to them for a "bad worship experience." but that is also bad theology - when we are in worship, the only thing that stops us from connecting to God is us and our hard heart - we are the only person to blame for not opening up to the expression of worship. it is ridiculous for us to blame another person for our heart not being open to God; but it is our culture. in our culture it is easier to blame another then to admit our faults. to even suggest that anything but our lives, our work, our baggage block us from worship is placing the "blame" on another person - but for worship to truly effect us we need to be open and ready to stand before God - we need to rid ourselves of all the garbage and baggage of life and simply open up to God.

i am certain there are more, but these two are the ones that pop into my head - if you know more, please share with us - we can use all the voices we can get :)

1 comment:

Craig said...

That's such a synchronicity!! I've been all over the concept of fearing God lately, and I quoted the verse about "fear and trembling" at the end of a poem that I blogged just yesterday!
Cool... but I still don't know what the cosmic significance of that is... hmmmn...