Monday, November 11, 2013

the impact

in acts chapter 16 we can read about the account of a "robust" worship service taking place in a prison. consequently, the circumstance changed for those two within that jail cell. it wasn't the fact that it was paul and silas, two giants of the early church, who were singing that made the difference. rather, it was the fact that god was receiving praise and honor. glory was attributed to god simply because of who he was...awesome.

worship has a profound impact on our lives. most of us who are church members, know it even though we may not be able to admit said impact. believe it or not, praise and worship impacts the worshipping individual, body, soul, and mind. filling your mind with god's awesome character in praise and worship guides our understanding of truth and gives us knowledge of these said benefits.

in the presence of god, worship unto him impacts one in such a way that a holy zeal for his name is found. singing about him reminds us of who he is. have you ever been in the presence of god and clinched your fist so tight and pumped it in the air like rocky balboa at the top of the philadelphia museum of art? maybe you are a dancer, maybe you are a shouter, or maybe you love to kneel quietly before him in adoration. a holy zeal will most definitely change your life; i am not talking about energy, but zeal, passion, sheer desire, for his glorification.

in the presence of god, worship unto him impacts one in such a way that a boldness for the proclamation of his standards rises up inside. some could refer to it as zeal, but what really takes place is what you would find in acts 5. the apostles are in the temple praising and worshipping god then began preaching in the name of jesus. the pharisees pull them out and again command them to not preach in jesus' name, their response, "it's necessary for us to obey god rather than men." the impact of worshipping and glorifying god is a boldness for his name and proclamation of his word.

in the presence of god, worship unto him impacts one in such a way that a contentment in him resides. it's an assurance of the relationship, the covenant, the faithfulness of him to his people; he cannot deny himself. shadrach, meshach, and abednego demonstrated this when they refused to worship the gods the king had commanded them to worship. they only worship god, and would rather be thrown in the fire than worship those gods. they go as far to say, in daniel 3, that even if god didn't save them, they still wouldn't worship nebuchadnezzars gods.

in the presence of god, worship unto him impacts one in such a way that perspective of god's design is understood. in the midst of worship our mind becomes transformed, we are beholding from one glory to the next his awesome majesty. the holy spirit moves amongst our hearts shaping our walk with him, gaining a discernment for seeing things the way god sees them and even appreciating why he does things the way he does them. it is easy for followers of jesus to be overwhelmed by the condition of sin in the world, and the toll it has taken on our fellow man. worship transforms our minds and hearts and leads us even if we are not completely sure what is taking place around us.

in the presence of god, worship unto him impacts one in such a way of refreshment. we were, in the end, never meant to carry the angst and worry that we choose to carry so frequently. because of the fracture of sin we can find in many parts of the world the door to despair is wide open. we never really can escape the clutches of this fracture, this side of the grave. thankfully jesus paid the price so that we don't have to live under it. jesus is our joy and satisfaction. in 1 samuel 16 we see clearly the power of worship over a lost and despaired individual. david played as to ease the tormenting spirits that frustrated king saul. the anointing found in worship unto him is the most refreshing our souls can find while we live in these earthen vessels. like i always told my mom when i wanted to sleep in church, "there is no better place to sleep, than the presence of the lord."

if worship is not impacting our lives, it is not because god is doing something wrong, it is because our hearts are not engaged. we could easily sing songs in bars, at home in the shower, or let the musicians do it on the radio; worship has meaning, it has purpose and god's design is for it to impact our lives.

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