Category Archives: Life

A Nutritious Part of a Balanced Life.

Worship –
1 : to honor or reverence as a divine being or supernatural power
2 : to regard with great or extravagant respect, honor, or devotion
intransitive senses : to perform or take part in worship or an act of worship.

That is what Merriam Webster says, but allow me to give you my personal definition of worship. Worship is “extolling the characteristics and the acts of God in thought, word, and deed.” It is magnifying WHO God is and WHAT God does, by what we think, say, and do. In other words, worship as singing is only part of the equation. We give worship to God by being men and women of integrity in our places of work. We give worship to God by serving those around us – providing food for the hungry, clothing for the naked, shelter for wanderer, etc. God is praised even in the small things, as when a cup of cold water is given in his name. He is praised when we acknowledge Him as the reason for our serving.

Yet even in our singing, worship is not so much about the music we choose, but the heart of gratitude that we offer to God. If God is unchanging – the same yesterday, today, and forever – then He is not affected by changing musical styles. He was not worshipped more with hymns than he was with Gregorian chants. He was not worshipped more with folk music than he was with hymns. He was not worshipped more with rock than He was with folk music. It is because music does not do the worshipping. The medium of music is merely a doorknob to the door of worship, and that door leads us into the very presence of God. God is worshipped, not by our music, but by our hearts’ grateful response to the redemption Christ provided. In other words, music is a catalyst, but true worship requires we engage our hearts in extolling God.

I have a little bit of homework for you this week. Take a few minutes each day and read a psalm; it doesn’t matter which one. Try and see where the psalmist is engaged in the different parts of worship from my definition above. Can you find a psalm that encompasses the whole definition by itself? Or do they all represent only a part or worship? As you read and examine the psalm, join with the psalmist in worshipping God through that psalm.

Give thanks to the LORD, for He is good; His love endures forever!

Scars and Stripes Forever

But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed. We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all. Isaiah 53:5-6
Allow me to paraphrase. “But he was impaled because of our sin; he was crushed because of our propensity to sin; he was punished in our place, and because of his punishment, we are given peace; and we are emotionally, spiritually, physically, and mentally healed by his wounds. Every one of us decided to follow our own crookedness, and God placed on him the crookedness of us all.”

Christ beckons us with his crucifixion, to receive healing and forgiveness from God. It is time to freely acknowledge our weakness before the Almighty who put on weakness for us; it is time to place our fears, worries, aches, pains, sins, emotional wounds, and diseases into the hands of the one whose hands were pierced for us. We come longing for his presence, and receiving his forgiveness.
The beating and crucifixion of Jesus accomplished much more than just our forgiveness; it also secured our healing. Where forgiveness is concerned with our past, healing is concerned with our present and our future.

My prayer for you. is that you would uncover the hidden places where the fears, pains, etc., have been hiding, and expose them to Jesus the Merciful, to the gentle healer himself.