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The Worship of GodMarch 18, 2020
One of the most basic desires that God puts in the heart of every believer through the gift of HIs Holy Spirit is the desire to worship Him. Before we become believers, we may have some basic desire to be a part of a church. It is not because we have a hunger for God or a thirst for His Word. It is either because we may have grown up in a certain church and still enjoy attending or because we hang out with the same crowd that we share a Sunday School Class with. We may be with a group of guys in a Sunday School Class that are the same guys that we play golf with during the week or we may be with women that with go out to eat with during the week and so we join them for Sunday School and "Church" on Sunday. But this kind of "going to church" is not at all about the worship of God. It is a part of the social routine of our lives. Worship is different.
When we beocme a child of God, we desire to worship God. We want to give Him what He desires and deserves. We want to sing to HIm. We want to pray to Him. We want to know Him throuugh the reading and study of His Word and we want to hear His Word preached. We want, in short; to worship Him. And we want to do that in three basic ways with one of these ways being both the goal and the starting point for every week of our lives. We want to worship God privately. So some time during every day, we open the Bible to read it and to study it. We can do this reandomly, I suppose; but this is not the best method. The best method is to have annually some kind of Bible reading plan. We want to pray and we can do that spontanesously which is fine but that does not work best for me. I need a strucutred way to keep my prayer life for being self-centered andn self-consumed. I use a prayer journal and I use every year a book of prayers form some saint or saints from the past. I have found for me that if I do not do this kind of thing, I will pray the same way every day and my prayers will really be centered in what is of utmost concern for me. I need help in my prayer life to help keep me from being so self-centered in my prayer life. Prifate worship is important and essential. It is the Holy Spirit who creates in us a desire to engage in worship daily. And it is the Holy Spirit that prompts us to gather for family worship. Family Worshp is I believe the hardest kind of worship to do with any kind of consistency. Most families struggle here. Most unless very unique find doing this daily almost impossibile. But finding time a few days a week and for sure on Saturday in preparatoin for Sunday and on Sunday in preparation for the week should be doable, don't you think? But the goal of private and family worship and the starting point for private and family worship every week should be our corporate worship of God with our church family every Lord's Day both morning and evening. I believe with everything in me that one of the most basic desires that marks the life of every true believer is the desire to worship God every Lord's Day with our church family. A person who professes to be a child of God who does not have that desire and does not see the necessity of coroporate worship should be fearful before God for the condition of his or her own soul. Oh we all go through seasons where we can be in state of spiritual despair that has an impact on our desire for worship and we can be hurt by people in our church family that can have a short terim impact on our desire for worship, but those seasons pass; and even when they are present we know deep down inside that the worship of God with our church family is necessary for us.
That is why this time when we cannot meet together corporately is so hard. It is why we want for this season to livestream some components or our regular weekly worship. I know that this livestreaming just like I know that listening to sermons that are podcast is no substitute for coroporate worship. Listening to a sermon or doing a personal Bible Study is not the same as coroporate worship. What we are doing in these weeks when we cannot gather is not coroporate worship. I know. But it is what we can do and will do for now to help us get through this time until by God's grace that Sunday comes which we will pray is sooner than later when we can all gather together again. Let's pray that that Sunday will come very soon.