Cultivate a Life of Worship
Having risen a long while before daylight, He went out and departed to a solitary place; and there He prayed. - Mark 1:35, emphasis added
Listen to what one man who spent years meditating on worship has written: "Worship is something we do. Studying the theology of worship and debating the forms of worship are all good, but by themselves they are inadequate. In the final analysis we learn to worship by worshiping."
Willingly offer yourself to the Lord as an instrument for worship. As an individual, learn to let go of your agenda, your concerns, your being blessed, and your hearing of the Word of God. The language of the gathered fellowship is not "I," but "we." So surrender to the ways of God; submit to others in the Christian fellowship; desire that God's Spirit will rise up in the group, not just within you as an individual. Seek to become of one mind, of one accord. Cultivate a life of complete spiritual dependency. Dependency means that you will be completely dependent upon God for anything significant to happen. The work is God's and not yours. A simple way to start this is to pray before doing anything; invite the Lord's presence, blessing, and guidance. Then give Him all the credit for anything good that happens.
Guard yourself from exposure to harmful influences that will kill worship. Cultivating worship also involves dealing with all the weeds that grow and choke the growth of your crop, as well as the pests that try to steal the harvest. For example, some of us are in the high-risk category for skin cancer. So what should we do? We should stay away from exposure to those deadly UV rays. Since all of us are prone to soul cancer that eats away at our worship, we should avoid having a lot of exposure to TV rays because they distract, deaden, and deflate the welling up of our souls in worship to God! If you cannot fast from TV, newspapers, and magazines for even a week, then you are a very weak Christian, and at risk spiritually.
Part of learning to cultivate worship is learning how to drown out distractions through prayers of gratefulness to God. For example, when I am preaching, I love to have babies and little children in the congregation. Rather than feeling that distractions somehow deter us from worshiping God, we should learn to simply receive whatever happens in a gathered worship experience. This applies to whatever happens at home or other places of private worship, as God tests our spirit. Grumbling and complaining cannot be successfully partnered with a spirit of adoration and worship!
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