Sunday, June 1, 2014

The Worship of Faith and Worship?

Just yesterday, as I was pondering the history of my church attendance and participation, I was struck by the possibility that worship of worship and worship of our personal faith could actually become one of those idols God says we are not to have before Him.

I believe it would be easy, if in fact is not already easy, to lose sight of God for our faith in Him. Meaning, we become so focused on our faith in God, or our worship of Him, that our out-working of faith and act of worship actually take precedence over God Himself. It’s a fine line.

We are to have faith: but not in our faith.
We are to have faith in God.

We are to worship: but not worship our worship or worship our faith.
We are to worship God.

Much energy gets poured into our “faith life.” We can become goal-oriented in “growing in faith.” And all that grooming can become a barometer for our selves first, and then for others. And soon faith is the focus, along with worship (which we put in the bucket of faith life). And though we say it’s about God, God quickly becomes a groupie to our life of faith and worship.

What I’m getting at, perhaps, after my first 13 years of learning what it means to be a Christian, is that faith in the Triune God must never become faith in my faith. Faith in God and the worship of Him must not contain spiritual barometers, emotional gauges and levels of prayer warrior status. We come right to His throne wherever we are and in whatever mood. And not primarily, or only, in church or a designated “worship time.”

Which means that often, nobody but God will notice our faith life because our faith life will be our silent thought life. Nobody will notice our worship because it will be happening when nobody is looking. And it will mean that our faith life and worship will collide and cooperate on a daily basis, whether people notice or not. Whether we notice or not.

When we worship God, not worship itself, and have faith in God alone, not in our faith, we are freed from a basis of self in which self is the center of faith and worship. 

“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as frontals on your forehead. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.” Deuteronomy 6:5-9

“My soul, wait in silence for God only, For my hope is from Him.” Psalm 62:5

“And he answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.” Luke 10:27

 “God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.” John 4:24