Not too long ago, a friend of mine shared with me about how God revealed to her about how her worship is louder than the lies of the enemy. I was blown away! With all the planning, stressing, and all the strong emotions I feel sometimes, I have to go to God in worship and song when I feel emotions so hard that I can’t even pray. It settles my heart and my soul in ways that sitting down and praying doesn’t do. And it got me to wondering, why do I worship
I mean, I like to worship it’s true. I love to sing and play guitar and worship our Lord. But why? Why does my heart and mind need to go there first when I feel so topsy turvy? As per usual, God gave me an answer. During my time alone with God this morning, I was reading in Matthew chapter 4 where Jesus goes into the wilderness after God has proclaimed to the world Jesus’ true identity – i.e. the identity of how God and heaven views Him, not the world.
So I’m reading, and reading, and reading all the tests that Satan puts before Jesus. I’m sure you all know the story too. But at the end, it hits me where Jesus tells Satan to beat it and quotes out of Deuteronomy,
“Worship the Lord your God and only Him. Serve Him with absolute single-mindedness.” (The Message)
Then Satan makes a hasty retreat and Angels came and took care of all of Jesus’ needs.
Ok, so Jesus faces down all these tests. And hard ones too! Just because He’s Jesus doesn’t mean it wasn’t hard for Him to resist those temptations! So Jesus has all these tests, but then goes and says to worship God and only Him. Worship. What about worship in the midst of incredible testing helps us?
Well, for me, when I’m worshiping, I’m not thinking about anything else. I’m thinking about the music, the words, and how much I love how the words of the song speak to me and how I can offer them up to God. So really, when I worship, there’s no room for anything else in my brain other than connecting with God.
But… I definitely do serve first and worship second. Which, I think is a HUGE reason why I get so agitated in the first place! I will reach out and help others simply out of my love of them and my desire to help, but then I wait to worship Him until after I feel empty and fully drained from my “single-minded” service.
See, this verse reminded me, very clearly, that I have it backwards. Dangerously backwards! Because if I’m serving and doing my thing first and worship God second, I’m committing idolatry. If I am putting anything first before God, I’m doing it out of my own pride and strength rather than being a vessel for His amazing goodness and grace.
And then after all that Jesus went through in the wilderness, Jesus chose to worship God through those trials and tribulations first before stepping into His ministry and serving the people. After all those tests, God sends the angels to take care of Jesus’ needs, and He will for me too! I can’t tell you the joy that it brings me to come to this place of, “I gotta worship” versus, “I gotta get to it.” Don’t get me wrong, I love my “to do” lists because they keep me focused and are a great tool. But I’m really excited to put Worship at the very top every time now! Because as God told my friend, my Worship is louder than the enemy’s lies.