What is worship? Yesterday I googled the word and got 240 million results. Apparently, worship means very different things for different people. Most of the time, worship makes us think of singing. But is there more to it than that?
We don’t have to look far or dig deep in scripture to find that justice is something that is very close to God’s heart. Yesterday, I was listening to Jason Gray’s Fade With Our Voices. I was reminded of Isaiah 58, where God talks about what He really wants from His people.
Is this the kind of fast I have chosen, only a day for bowing one’s head like a reed and for lying in sackcloth and ashes? Is that what you call a fast, a day acceptable to the LORD? Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen: to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke? Is it not to share your food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter—when you see the naked, to clothe him, and not turn away from your own flesh and blood? Then your light will break forth like the dawn, and your healing will quickly appear; then your righteousness will go before you, and the glory of the LORD will be your rear guard. Then you will call and the LORD will answer; you will cry for help, and He will say: Here am I. If you do away with the yoke of oppression, with the pointing finger and malicious talk, and if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will become like noonday. –Isaiah 58:5-10
Not just to feel sorry for people, but to do something about it. Not just to throw some money at the homeless person on the corner, but to spend ourselves in behalf of the hungry. That’s worship. It’s one thing for me to sing about how great God is and how much He loves us, but it’s another thing for me to go and live like I believe it. And frankly, it’s something I’m not very good at. I can give easily out of abundance, but I have rarely, if ever, known what it means to give so much that it hurts. But isn’t that worship, to take up our cross and follow Him? Isn’t it supposed to cost us something?
What do you think? What does worship mean to you?
Fade With Our Voices Jason Gray
After all the songs are sung, And our prayers for kingdom come, Did we bring honor to the words we sing?
Does our worship have hands, Does it have feet, Does it stand up in the face of injustice? Does our worship bow down, Does it run deep, Is it more than a song that fades with our voices?
So if we raise our hands high, Let us also reach them out. If we lift our voices up, Let it be the sound of love.
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