The Way to Worship
Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth.
Worship the Lord with gladness;
come before him with joyful songs.
Know that the Lord is God.
It is he who made us, and we are his;
we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.
Enter his gates with thanksgiving
and his courts with praise;
give thanks to him and praise his name.
For the Lord is good and his love endures forever;
his faithfulness continues through all generations.
As worshippers we want to be ready to worship with gladness, and sing our joyful songs at all times but as God’s people we are spiritually forgetful. We lose sight of God’s goodness and our secure position in Him is too easily eroded. When this happens releasing a song of worship might not come freely but there is a way that works, a journey we can choose. Psalm 100 doesn’t just call us to worship, it gives us some great clues as to how:
Clue number 1 – Declare Truth
Know that the Lord is God. It is He who made us and we are his.
We stir our hearts to worship when we acknowledge the unchanging truth of who He is. It doesn’t start with our feelings, it isn’t based on what kind of week we’ve had. It starts with Him.
Clue number 2 - Choose thankfulness
Enter his gates with thanksgiving… give thanks to him and praise his name
As God’s people we will always have a reason to be thankful. Thankfulness doesn’t have to be an overflow of the heart, it can be a decision of the will. As Habakkuk prayed: Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines….yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Saviour. (Habakkuk 3.17-18). When we choose to speak out and sing out our thankfulness to God we begin to worship whatever we feel and whatever we are going through.
Clue Number 3 - Remind ourselves
For the Lord is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.
When we lose sight, the remedy is to actively remember. Again, this is a choice to ‘forget not all his benefits (Psalm 103.2) and to join with the psalmist in saying ‘I will remember the deeds of the Lord; yes, I will remember your miracles of long ago. I will consider all your works and meditate on all your mighty deeds.” (Psalm 77.11-12)
Declare truth. Choose thankfulness. Remind ourselves. It might sound like a list of dry obligations but in declaring, choosing and reminding we find that we go on a journey. Our hearts are stirred. A song is released. We’ve come to the place of intimacy, a place of adoration, a place of surrender.
When we come to lead worship let’s remember that people come worn down, distracted, disappointed and spiritually forgetful. Let’s help them enter into his presence and come to place of intimacy by declaring truth, singing songs of thankfulness and reminding ourselves of God’s goodness, faithfulness and great love.
And today let’s take some time to speak or sing out the truth of who God is, of his unfailing love and unchanging character. Let’s thank him for the amazing things he has done and the many blessings he has poured into our lives. Let us let our hearts be stirred in our remembering. Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving and his courts with praise.
Ali is one of the pastors on staff here at Soul Survivor Watford Church, and has been a part of the team for over 20 years now. She also hosts and co-lead’s our summer festivals with Mike & Andy, alongside heading up Loud & Clear Conference, an event to see young leaders resourced to best communicate what God has placed on their heart. Ali has a passion for worship and has been a part of our church & summer worship teams for many years. She is married to an Aussie, has two lovely kids and own’s two little hamsters. We love you Ali!