Ways & How

how to worship God

how to worship God

Worship is the praise and honor we give God, our Creator, King, Savior and Lord. As the author and giver of all that is good, gracious and merciful, worship is our proper response to His love. The practice of worship varies from people to people, from church to church, from culture to culture. But just as God is an individual God who loves and created each of us unique, the form of worship is not as important to Him as the heart behind it. He is King of Kings and Lord of Lords, but He is also the greatest lover of our souls, sinful and flawed as we are. The proper response to such love from so great a King and Lord is worship. But how to worship God so that He is honored and glorified? Worship must first of all come from love. God has done so much for us, including sending His Son to die on the cross for our sins. He loves us because He is love. It is His divine nature. How do we respond? Yes, with love. It is only fitting and proper. Jesus said, “And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength. The second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself’” (Mark 12:30-31).

That is where proper worship stems from. To love the Lord our God:

  1. With all our heart: This means surrendering our desires and pleasures to loving Him and obeying His will. We want to do only what pleases Him. We believe fully in Him and we follow after Him wholeheartedly, withholding nothing.

  2. With all our soul: We love, worship and obey God of our own volition. Free will is a gift that God magnanimously bestowed on us, that we might worship Him freely and fully, not under duress or compulsion. Indeed, we are compelled to worship Him out of conviction of our sinfulness and the greatness of His grace and mercy, but it is never forced.

  3. All our minds: Human intellect is one of the greatest barriers to worship. We use human logic to explain God’s mystery, and when we can make or see no logical explanation, we conclude that He does not exist, or that everything about Him is false. Intellectual pride will never admit faith. And even professing Christians will seek to interpret Scripture to indulge their intellect, hence the rise of many false and contradictory teachings. Loving God with all our minds involves humbling ourselves before Him and being teachable. It doesn't mean we give up our rights to think. It simply means we become as little children before Him, giving up our intellectual pride, and having the honesty to listen to His Word with an open mind.

  4. All our strength: Everything we do, we must do for His glory. This means that as we work, play, eat, drink, and do everything else in our lives, we do it to and for Him. We must be His children and disciples in our day-to-day lives, representing Him, working to make His will be done. When we do this, everything we do becomes an act of worship.

  5. Love others as we love ourselves: It’s inevitable. We become like what (or who) we worship. The more we truly worship God, the more we become loving, like Him. The more we love Him, the more we love others and ourselves. Loving ourselves in God’s way doesn't mean selfishness or self-centeredness, but caring for ourselves, treating ourselves with dignity and respect and doing the same for others. Treating others kindly, compassionately, graciously and forgiving others their sin, are equally acts of worship.

Many people mistake worship for the Sunday service, when we go to church and fellowship with other believers. Therefore, there are many debates about music, liturgy, applause, preaching and even way of dress. But all these are outward forms. What matters to God is the heart we put in the worship. If we pray and come before Him with humble, contrite hearts, He hears us. If we have faith, He is pleased. But no matter how much we shout, kneel or beat ourselves, if our hearts are proud and unrepentant, it is not worship in His sight. It is not only important that we worship God; it is just as important that we properly observe how to worship God.


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