The centerpiece of heaven is the presence of Jesus! All eyes and hearts are focused on Him. The response is an atmosphere of worship! Heaven is charged with worship! In Revelation 4 when John saw into heaven, he saw 24 elders worshipping around the throne of Jesus! The response to Jesus is to fall at his feet and give him the honor that He is due!
The elders worship because worship is what each of us were eternally created for! It is the primary response to the presence of God. And this response effects us in a powerful way as God often becomes more tangible when we worship Him.
The contrast to heaven is the atmosphere of worship during many church services around the world each Sunday. Often folks stand and look around at the the projection screen making little effort to sing – no hands raised, no eyes closed. Others will stand out in the lobby, drink coffee and chit-chat about whatever with the underlying subconscious belief that church doesn’t start until the minister begins to preach.
I’m not saying this to be critical. This hurts my heart because I know many of those who don’t engage in worship (sing, pray, hands raised, etc.) say they struggle with passion for God and often fill unfulfilled in life. But if you’ll think about it, this makes sense because worship is a participatory experience where we lose ourselves in God and in losing ourselves in Him we discover why we were created!
The word worship comes from a Greek word, proskuneo, that means to kiss the face of. We kiss those we are intimate with! This means worship is more than just singing songs while a talented Worship Leader leads us; it is about experiencing intimacy with God. Intimacy is about the encounter where we are giving all of ourselves to God as a response to the fact that he is giving all of Himself to us!
True intimacy in worship is much deeper than music. While I’ll admit music can help intimacy, if a person could only get intimate with with their spouse when they hear music, we would say they probably don’t have a healthy relationship. And if they never choose to experience intimacy with their spouse then we would say they definitely don’t have a healthy relationship. The same is true with our relationship with God.
I know many people who read my articles come from a different background than me. Most people have never been taught the importance of worship so I want to help. Here is a link to a series I did on worship this summer. I go into detail about why we worship and the effects of the intimate encounter with Jesus!
I was fortunate to attend churches that placed a heavy emphasis on worship in my formative years and because I have experienced God powerfully in worship it’s a passion I’m consumed with to share with others!
I want to encourage you wherever you attend church this weekend, be early, come hungry, and expect to encounter God in worship. Psalm 22:3 says God inhabits the praises of his people. This means God dwells within our praise! He wants to experience you and He wants you to experience Him.
This is what you were born for!