“God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth” (John 4:24) A worship service in a small village in Romania
You are in church on a Sunday morning, have you ever found yourself……..
1. wishing that you weren’t in church?
2. thinking about the week ahead during the message?
3. fighting off sleep?
4. making negative mental notes about the people in the service?
5. singing and not paying attention to the words or our hearts?
6. picking apart the message being preached?
7. forgetting the sermon by the time you eat Sunday dinner?
What is the problem with our time of worship on Sunday morning? Could it be that we arrive totally unprepared to worship God? How can we have prepared hearts to worship the Living God?
Look unto God in preparation to worship Him.
Do I study and meditate upon His Word during the week? How can we expect to receive something from the Word of God during the worship service if we are not bathing our hearts in the Word of God during the week? “O how love I thy law! it is my meditation all the day.” (Psalm 119:97) Our love for the Word during the week will be evident in our response to the Word on Sunday. The message is only the beginning of allowing the Word to work in our minds and hearts.
Do I seek the Lord in prayer during the week as I prepare to worship Him? Yes, the pastor should have a prayerful heart as he enters the pulpit on Sunday morning; however, each listener should have prayerful heart as well. We should pray with the Psalmist. “Open thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of thy law.” (Psalm 119:18)
Do I desire to glorify God as I worship Him? Often people say: “I didn’t get anything out of the service? What is the reason? Could it be that they did not put anything into the service? Their goal was to receive a blessing instead of giving glory to their Heavenly Father. Does our attitude on Sunday reflect these words: “O magnify the Lord with me and let us exalt His name together.” (Psalm 34:3)
Look at Yourself in Preparation to Worship God
1. Do I have the right attitude about attending the worship service of the church? Our attitude determines the richness of our worship experience. If we arrive at the worship service with a negative attitude, our time of worship will be a negative experience. The Psalmist says: “I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go into the house of the Lord. “(Psalm 122:1) When we enter the worship with a spirit of joy and gratefulness, our worship experience will be one of joy.
2. Do I have the right relationship with God as I attend the worship service?
Sin will keep us from having an encouraging, joyful worship experience with God. How can we worship God with our hearts, if we have unconfessed sin ruling in our hearts? “Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.” (James 4:8) We make sure our outer person is clean before we attend the worship service, but what about our hearts?
3. Do I have the right understanding of the need to attend the Sunday morning worship service? There are many people who attend church who don’t really understand why they are there. Maybe, it is out of habit. Maybe, they feel it is the right thing to do. However, God makes it clear that we as His children need to meet to together. This is not only to worship Him, but also to minister one to another. The church service is not only an opportunity to have people minister unto us, but it is also an opportunity to minister unto others. God says: “And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works: Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.” (Hebrews 10:24-25)
Look at others in preparation to worship God
1. Do I have the right relationship with those around me? Jesus taught that you can’t come before God’s altar and offer your gift if you have a problem with others. (Matthew 5:23-26) How can we worship God on Sunday, when we have unresolved conflict in our family, or in our church family?
2. Do I see the opportunities of ministry within my family and my church family? God has given every believer a spiritual gift. We are to use our gift within His Body (Romans 12:3-8). These gifts are not for our own benefit, but for the benefit of others. The worship time gives us an opportunity to have a sensitive heart towards others, to pray for others, and to be an encouragement to others.
Worship means to give worth to His name. The Sunday morning worship service can be a negative experience, a boring experience, a tedious experience or it can be a time of enjoying and honoring the presence of the Living God. The choice is our. Next Sunday, will we come to worship Him with a prepared, and surrendered heart? Will our worship be worthy of our great and mighty God?