What To Do When Your Worship Seems Stale….
When I was a child and I did something wrong my parents would always make me apologize. Now I do it with my kids. There were times when I didn’t want to apologize. I knew the right words to say – “I’m sorry” – but I really wasn’t. I wasn’t sorry one little bit. The words were there but I was not sincere. My parents wanted a sincere apology but I didn’t give it. The words of my mouth were the right words – but my heart was as far as the east is from the west about what I was really thinking. There was an apology, but there was no sincerity. It kind of reminds me of the passage Jesus quotes from the Old Testament, found in the New Testament in Mark chapter seven:
“This people honors Me with their lips, But their heart is far from Me. And in vain they worship Me.” Mark 7:6-7 (NKJV)
When we offer stale worship, its the same as an empty apology. We are offering something that we do not mean. God would rather hear sincere heartfelt worship than routine ritual. Because we get caught up in methodology today, we face the same problems that the worshipers down through the centuries have faced. We get stale! This year has been unprecedented in many areas, including our daily routines and personal disciplines. We may even find our worship to our Lord is not what it used to be. If we are not careful we can allow the uncertainty of tomorrow to keep us from the sincerity of today. Jesus wants us to bring our whole heart to Him in our worship, even the messy parts!
When we choose to worship in faith, despite our feelings, God sets in motion things only seen in the spiritual realm. What goes on in the spiritual realm will eventually show up for our eyes to see in the natural. When praises go up, blessings come down! All it takes is a believing heart that will glorify God in the best and the worst of times!
If your worship has been a little stale these days, let me remind you of the benefits we receive when we worship with a sincere heart.
Five Benefits from Sincere Worship:
1. God Shows up!
When King Solomon dedicated the Temple to God, he offered sacrifices and praised God. God answered by sending fire from heaven. Then His Glory came (check out 2 Chronicles7). Praise attracts God’s presence. He is drawn to where He is welcomed. The Lord inhabits the praises of His people. If God seems distant to you, begin to really, sincerely worship Him! He will show up Every Single Time.
2. God gives us Success in the battle!
King Jehoshaphat got the revelation to send worshipers out in front of the army and he had great success (Read 2 Chronicles 20:15-20 for the full story). There is power in our praise! When we worship God in the midst of our battles we will confuse the enemy and release blessings over our own lives. If you are in a battle, begin to praise God and watch the enemy flee! This is how we fight our battles!
3. God Sets us free!
One of my favorite passages of worship is found in Acts 16:25-26 which states, “But at midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them. Suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken; and immediately all the doors were opened and everyone’s chains were loosed.” Not only were Paul and Silas’ physical chains loosed but the jailer’s spiritual chains were loosed. He and his whole family got saved that day. Are you dealing with any kind of bondage? Remember there is freedom in your worship.
4. God Satisfies our soul!
Scripture says in Psalm 63:1-5, “O God, You are my God; early will I seek You; my soul thirsts for You; my flesh longs for You in a dry and thirsty land where there is no water. So I have looked for you in the sanctuary, to see your power and your glory. Because your loving kindness is better than life, my lips shall praise you. Thus I will bless you while I live; I will lift up my hands in your name. My soul shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness, and my mouth shall praise you with joyful lips”.
So many people go through life searching for what will fulfill them. In their search for fulfillment many try to climb the corporate ladder; many think it’s the American dream; many search for true love in another person, and some even turn to drugs and alcohol.
Here is the thing: ONLY GOD can truly satisfy your soul.
There is a God-shaped hole in all of us that only He can fill. Worship the Lord, and find your contentment, peace, love, and grace that we all desperately need!
5. God Strengthens our faith!
Romans 4:20 states, “He did not waver at the promise of God through unbelief, but was strengthened in faith, giving glory to God”. When you truly experience God through worship your faith will be strengthened. Jesus never lies to us. He was clear when He said in this world we will have “troubles”, but He also said He will be near to us. Most of us have faced troubles in 2020 that were unimaginable, but those of us who have leaned into God in the midst of our troubles have also found a strength that is unfathomable.
If you are tired of going through the motions and you are ready to really get your worship on, then I encourage you to say this prayer with me:
Heavenly Father, I thank you that regardless of what is going on in the world when I press in to worship then you show up! As I present my needs and concerns to you, O Lord, may I be content to leave the results to you. Your presence fills the room when I focus on you and not just my problems, so I choose to surrender to you in worship. I trust you to give me success and scatter the enemy. I choose to believe you will set me free from every lie of the enemy and every tongue that rises against me. I come to you when I am heavy-laden because I know you give me true rest and you are the only one who can satisfy my soul. Strengthen in me, O Lord, my commitment to regularly talk with you and hear from you through your word, worship, and prayer. I pray this in Jesus’ name!
-Featured photo credit Dawn Biery Photography, Model credit: Terry Kolbow