To think of God rightly, as He is, one cannot help but lapse into worship; and worship is the single most powerful force in completing and sustaining the spiritual formation of the whole person. Worship naturally arises from thinking rightly of God on the basis of revealed truth confirmed in experience. We say flatly, “Worship is at once the overall character of the renovated thought life and the only safe place for any human being to stand.” Dallas Willard from article “Transformation of the Mind”.
My mom was no Dallas Willard, but she had a deep sense of what was important in life. As a child she planted within me a deep love for Christ and, therefore, a love for the church (His bride).
The church was the center of my experience of worship. Not that worship didn’t happen every day of the week. Every morning we worshiped at the breakfast table as we prayed, read God’s Word and shared together. All through the day my mom hummed or sang hymns, while she went through her day – cleaning thousands of eggs getting them ready to go to market, driving them to market, doing her shopping, cleaning the house. Every activity was an act of worship, but she always reminded me that her daily worship came from connecting in corporate worship every week.
I am so thankful for those seeds planted by my mom. There was never anything that would replace our weekly trek to church. Even when mom was sick, which wasn’t very often, she’d make sure I had a ride to church with one of our neighbors. Because of those seeds, I’m compelled to be at weekly worship and I believe fully what Dallas Willard wrote when he penned these words — “worship is the single most powerful force in completing and sustaining the spiritual formation of the whole person.”
Over the years, when Rich and I have been on our travels, we have experienced so many different forms of churches and worship. Whether it was the Greek Orthodox section of Church of the Holy Sepulcher in Jerusalem, the Vineyard church outside of Vancouver, BC, the Roman Catholic Cathedral in Zagreb, Croatia, the Protestant American Cathedral in Paris, or the little non-denominational church in a movie theater in Florianopolis, Brazil all had one thing in common – they came together to honor and worship Jesus in a their own way.
We didn’t even need to know the language, you could feel the Holy Spirit at work. You could see on the faces of the people a love for Christ and a love for one another.
Every week I look forward to my time of worship with people who love Jesus. Worshipping with other believers is a powerful soul builder. Especially, if we can leave ourselves at the doorstep and focus on worshipping God.
Doesn’t matter the style of worship, the surroundings that we worship in or even the language that is spoken. What matters is where our hearts are. I think it was what the writer of Hebrews was referring to when he wrote “Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works. And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of His return is drawing near.” Hebrews 10:24-25
I pray that this may plant a seed in you. A seed of love for Christ’s Body (the Church) and a love and passion for worshipping in it with other believers.