Impacting Worship Part IV
Romans 8:24-27; Philippians 2:1-14
The key to worship is not how or where we do it, as long as we come as humble, contrite people poured out before His Majesty. Impacting worship is our aptitude and attitude from what He gives that seeks His glory as the reason for our worship. It is not about methodologies or liturgies or ritual or the substances of worship. It is honoring The Substance, Christ as our Lord, personally, collectively, and passionately in truth. Worship is to be lived out in our lives, attitudes, and relationships. For our worship to be impacting, Christ must be impacting us. The key is, He already is impacting you if you are a real, authentic Christian, one whose faith is in Christ. Thus, we must bend our will to allow His impact to reach us more deeply and more fervently, especially as we "run" our churches. He is to be our top priority, not how the choir is arranged or what song or hymn is our favorite. Christ can be glorified and worshiped in a dusty basement or in a magnificent cathedral, and He can be blasphemed in these same places. It is our capacity for and attitude toward worship that shows our true worship, and that also points others to Him.
Remember that the essential element in worship is that all who proclaim God as Lord must also be devoted to Him. Worship is the attitude of our hearts in fellowship with Him, and is the result of our gratefulness for who our Lord Jesus Christ is, what He has done for you and me, and our commitment to express these essential qualities with an attitude of gratitude in both our daily lives and our church services. True worship is allowing His Spirit to penetrate us so we are meeting with Him, our heart pouring out to His (Gen. 12:8; Rom. 8:24-27; Phil. 2:5).
As church leaders, we are called to inspire people to worship Christ as Lord. We are to show our people that God is real in our lives, and that He has a tangible effect upon us so they will have a model and an inspiration to follow. This is what it means to lead, to show the way-His Way-by living it and venturing there first. We must have encountered God first and foremost before we can ask others to do the same. The impact of Christ in our lives cannot be pretended or manipulated, nor can it be an obligation or a show. Impacting worship must be in and from us first. It must be real, and we must first be surrendered to Christ as "Lord" and not "lord" before we expect it to come upon those we lead. We are to show and demonstrate to those who think this is too hard or scary that this impact is a real joy; it is a pleasure to grow in Christ. We are to show we are not limited; we are liberated in Him, and He is our joyfulness and our Lord. Our success as a church is not who or how many come; it is determined by what we do with those who do come. Leading others to encounter Christ and experience His presence in a deeper, more impacting way is paramount. Motivating them into His Way and being living sacrifices is what a church and its worship are designed for (Rom. 11:33-36; 2 Thess. 2:13-14; Rev. 5:12).
The result for us is that our worship must not be childish mutterings. We must realize the supremacy and nature of our Lord and direct our worship to the One we honor. So, the individual Christian and the church should be in committed prayer and practicing authentic impacting worship. Our call is to have our personal and collective worship go way beyond blind repetitions and trivial offerings or faulty desires, so we are led by the Spirit into the mysteries and prevalence of our Lord, which will grow the church closer and tighter to Christ and it will be more open and caring to those around us. This we do with boldness and confidence, and without any selfish ambitions. Coming before our Lord this way was a privilege to the ancient Jewish high priest. It was done by one person, once a year only, and now is available to any believer who walks the way of our Lord (Psalm 50:21; 1 Cor. 2:13-16).
Impacting worship helps us to manifest forgiveness to each other, which translates into our accountability to God and our mutual accountability to one another. Therefore, we acknowledge and hold each other to our promises and to our relationships. We need not go to a Priest, but to God directly, Whom we can trust with our authentic confession; our profession and repentance is our claim of our righteousness, who we are in Christ.
The person who engages in impacting worship is the Christian who is surrendered to the Lordship of Christ and has a full understanding of prayer. This person practices prayer so that it affects them and then impacts the lives of others because of his or her worship, devotion, and prayer. These specific acts of worship and prayer are crucial for the church to be its best for God's glory. We are to be our best to carry out the true purpose of the church rather than warming the pews with our rears and then ignoring our neighborhoods and call! Christ needs us to be on fire with passion and conviction that flows from our personal growth and the Spirit using our worship, learning, prayer, and study life. Then, our churches will be filled with Christ's children worshipping and caring for one another, the community, and the world. Christ does not need gossipmongers and hypocrites who feel their self-righteousness is exempt from His call. Christ wants you and me to be in Him; so, let's go out and prepare ourselves to be better servants for His people!
Questions to Ponder
Read Rom. 8:24-27; Phil. 2:1-14
- The key to worship is?
- How is worship a covenant and call from our Lord?
- How does your Worship of Christ flow from your submission to Him?
- How has worship been lived out in your life, attitudes, and relationships? How can it be more so?
- How important are your personal feelings about worship in how your worship?
- How do your feelings on worship line up to the precepts of God's call to worship? What can you do to line yours up to His if they are not already?
- How do you feel now about the methodologies or liturgies or ritual or the substances of worship?
- Impacting worship is your…?
- How can you come before Christ Him and meet with Him with more reverence, gladness, and joy?
- How has worship been your heart pouring out to His? How can it be better?
- How would you describe sincere praise? From your perspective, what pleases Him? How can you be more of a fragrant offering and poured out to our Lord?
- What are you doing with Christ's eminence and significance in your daily life? Are you bowing down, living a life worthily as He modeled for you? How so? What prevents this from happening more?
- How does it make you feel or what hope does it give you that the entirety of all things in heaven and earth will eventually worship the Christ (Rev. 4)?
- Can you explain the difference between worshiping Christ out of reverence and "worshipping" Him out of compulsion?
- What does it mean to you that Christ as "Lord" and not "lord"?
- How is worship to be the attitude of your heart in fellowship with Him? How should it be better?
- What will you and your church do to focus on the Supremacy and nature of our Lord and direct your worship to the One we honor?
- What will you and your church do to foster humble, contrite people who are poured out before His Majesty? What will you and your church do to accomplish this?
- For our worship to be impacting, Christ must be impacting you, why is that? How can it be more so?
- What can your church do to model and inspirer its people to impacting worship?
© Richard .J. Krejcir Ph.D. 2006 Into Thy Word Ministries www.discipleshiptools.org