Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Worship as a Lifestyle

“You are not worshiping right in any place until you are worshiping God right in every place.”

~A.W. Tozer.

It’s a worn cliché I’m sure. Worship is a lifestyle. It’s a pity though that it is a cliché because there’s almost certainly no finer truth known regarding humankind’s relationship with God.

The quote of Dr. Tozer’s is quite a powerfully constructed statement. To worship right we must:

1. Worship God;

2. Do No. 1 correctly;

3. Do it in every place.

Perhaps the reason Worship is a lifestyle is so cliché is it’s so profound, yet it can so easily be said—flippantly, many times—without the repentance of heart (circumcision of heart) to commit to the deed of actually working it out in real terms. And the fact is it’s a wish for all of us on a level almost impossible to attain. We’re, after all, stuck at the heart with the dreaded ‘fall curse,’ alive in our sin—even if we’re reconciled to Christ, though he sanctifies us through and through, each growing day.

It shouldn’t depress us to learn this, for if Paul had trouble with sin (Romans 7:14-17), we will most certainly have problems too. Still, sin interrupts worship.

And yet again the fact of Dr. Tozer’s quote should simply drive us on toward the aspiration of worship.

It centralises us to the scope of God and God alone; everything else as a driving focus is shut out. Everything of life: God. God... in, over, through, under and around... everything.

At times I’ve been criticised, even by Christians, for being over-zealous for God; so is that “worship?” The purest sense of worship hardly puts anyone off (most of the time)—it thrills them with the very light of Christ—glory is due Jesus and the Father though us. It inspires because of its purity and selflessness. And yet, there will be times when God is perfectly worshipped and people are made upset!

The worship of God, in alignment with Dr. Tozer’s quote, has got to be about ‘expressing our praise and devotion,’ and ascribing worthiness to God alone, not the least of which for his saving us, by living the purest version of his truth and his grace that we can; a daily, moment-by-moment commitment to love—girded by truth, wisdom, grace and much fruit of the Spirit.

© 2010 S. J. Wickham.

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