People may view worship as the thirty minutes on Sunday morning when we sing to the Lord in church. That is a form of worship and corporate worship is very important in the Christian walk. Coming together with other believers and worshiping the Lord is very necessary. It strengthens our walk with the Lord to be surrounded by brothers and sisters in Christ all praising our Heavenly Father together. Personal worship time with the Lord is also vital and important in our lives as followers of Christ. The times when you are on your knees in the quiet of your home praying and spending time with the Lord is worship as well. However, worship isn’t just singing in church or the quiet times on your own with the Lord. In fact, worship is a lifestyle.
What does it look like to have a lifestyle of worship? King David in the Bible is someone who really knew how to worship the Lord in spirit and in truth. In Acts 13:22 the apostle Paul says, “But God removed Saul and replaced him with David, a man about whom God said, “I have found David son of Jesse, a man after my own heart. He will do everything I want him to do.” God himself called David a man after His own heart, that is so incredible. If we are honest with ourselves could God call us men and women after His own heart? A better question would be, how do we become men and women who seek after God’s own heart? I believe it starts with looking into our own hearts.
Worship at its core is what we were made to do, we were created to worship our Heavenly Father. Psalm 149:3-5 says, “Praise His name with dancing accompanied by tambourine and harp. For the Lord delights in his people; he crowns the humble with victory. Let the faithful rejoice that He honors them. Let them sing for joy as they lie on their beds.” The definition of worship is; to adore, to revere, to honor with extravagant love. Worshiping the Lord should be a part of what we do constantly throughout the day. John 4:23-24(TPT) says, “From here on, worshiping the Father will not be a matter of the right place but with the right heart. For God is a spirit, and He longs to have sincere worshipers who worship and adore Him in the realm of Spirit and in truth.” In order for true worship to happen we must first accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior. Giving our lives’ completely to Him, repenting of our past sins, turning away from our old desires and living according to His Word and plan for our lives. It is the greatest decision you could ever make, to give your life to the Lord. Once you have given your life to the Lord, worshiping Him is a natural response. You want to worship the Father who created you, understanding that He sent His only son Jesus to die on the cross for you.Knowing that, makes worshiping Him the most beautiful thing in the world. This is when true worship can happen, when we surrender everything at the feet of Jesus and give Him the praise and honor He deserves from our hearts to His.
David shows us time and time again in the Bible that total surrender is required to worship the Lord. When God anointed David to become King of Israel he didn’t look like a king. David didn’t necessarily fit the image of someone who would rule a nation. The story in 1 Samuel, tells us that when God sent Samuel to find Jesse who was the father of soon to be king, David, Samuel saw David’s oldest brother and thought for sure that he would be the anointed one. But God told Samuel, “Don’t judge by his appearance or height, for I have rejected him. The Lord doesn’t see things the way you see them. People judge by outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart” (1 Samuel 16:7). God was looking at David’s heart from the start and He saw a heart that was fixed on one thing and that was seeking Him. David was fully devoted to the Lord.
Even though David was fully devoted to the Lord, that did not mean he was perfect. Psalm 51 is the psalm that David wrote after he had committed adultery with Bathsheba and then had her husband killed in battle. Throughout this psalm David is asking the Lord to purify him, to forgive him of his sins and thanking God for his love and compassion. He truly is surrendering his whole self to the Lord and is repenting for what he has done. Psalm 51:10-11 says, “Create in me a clean heart, O God. Renew a loyal spirit within me. Do not banish me from your presence, and don’t take your Holy Spirit from me.” There were consequences for David’s sin, just like there are consequences when we sin, no matter what the sin is. However, David realized what he had done and how he had sinned against the Lord and these verses really show his heart for the Lord. Even after everything he had done, he came running back to the Father, seeking more of Him and wanting to be made whole again. The Lord forgave David, just like He forgives us when we come to Him and repent for things we have done to sin against God. Through his surrender and repentance David showed a true heart of worship is not perfection, but genuine relationship with the Lord.
The relationship that David had with the Lord, led him to be bold and unashamed in his worship to God. He did not care what others thought of him when he worshiped the Lord, or how extravagant his worship looked. The Bible says that David danced before the Lord with all of his might, some of his clothes even came off he danced so hard (2 Samuel 6:14). And because the way David worshiped looked so foolish, his wife Michal even confronted him about it and his response was this, “Yes, and I am willing to look even more foolish than this, even to be humiliated in my own eyes” (2 Samuel 6:22). You see, David understood the heart of worship. He was unashamed to look like a fool and dance before the Lord, because he really believed in the God he was serving and had genuine joy to worship Him.
If we are completely honest with ourselves, could we say we are willing to be bold and look like fools in our worship for Jesus? Worshiping Jesus boldly won’t always look like singing and dancing, it will look like daily surrendering to the Lord in everything we do, no matter what the task is. When I was nineteen I had just truly surrendered my life to the Lord and about two weeks later I was at a mall with two of my friends. My one friend who was with me saw a gentleman who had a hurt foot and my friend told me that she was going to go pray for the gentleman. I remember I had never seen anyone be so bold in their faith to just go up to a stranger and pray for them and share the love of Jesus with them. At the time it seemed crazy to me that she would do that. However, it wasn’t crazy at all, that’s is what boldly serving Jesus looks like. Six years later that moment sticks with me, because that is what our walk with Jesus is all about. Sharing His love and being sensitive to the Holy Spirit to speak to others about Him. My friend truly surrendered to the Lord and was listening to the Holy Spirit in that moment, she was living with a true heart of worship.
That is what having a heart of worship is all about. The daily surrender to the Lord, seeking Him with a pure heart, so that we can hear when He is speaking to us. It is that constant relationship with our Heavenly Father. Worshiping with our fellow believers at church is very important and necessary in our walk with the Lord. Just as necessary as our personal time with Him. But worship does not just end with singing a song. It is loving God more than anyone or anything. Putting Him first in every single thing that we do, without trying to get recognition from anyone else. The heart of worship is simply giving the Lord back the love that He showed to us. How do you think you could cultivate the heart of worship in your own life? In what ways do you want to see your own life model what we see in David’s life?