Hearing the Music

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Over the last few weeks we have been thinking through ways that we articulate/share the vision God has given us for life in this world. So far we have said, Enlivened by the Gospel, we will Engage God’s world with winsomeness and Embrace God’s family with welcome. This week we come to the fourth and final “E”, namely, Enjoy God with Worship. Let’s break this down a bit.

What does the word worship conjure up for you? Sunday mornings? Images of hymnals and organs, guitars or drums, people seated in rows? Is it the music, the preaching, prayer? Is it solemn or joyful? How about all of the above, and more! Worship is the totality of how we live our lives before God as those enlivened by the Gospel. Worship shouts to the Lord in praise and adoration. Worship quietly and soberly reflects on the meaning of our days. Worship engages the marketplace through our occupations. Worship raises kids at home. Worship shares the good news with our neighbors. Worship tosses a ball in the yard or takes a walk in the woods. Worship wakes us up daily to be followers of Jesus in every aspect of life!

And it is important that it is God whom we worship. It is often said that you worship what you love. For some, that may be money or cars, academic achievement or music, a spouse, our kids, popularity, power, you name it. Many of these are good things, but when they become ultimate things the worship becomes idolatry. God alone is worthy of our worship. Our fervent desire is that he is at the center of all that we do, both formally and informally as Christ Church.

What is the result of a life filled with the worship of God? Joy! Joy does not mean an unmitigated happiness that never suffers, but rather it is a quality of spirit that is characterized by gratitude, contentment, and hope. Some of you are familiar with the Westminster Shorter Catechism Q. and A. #1, which asks after the chief end of humanity. The answer is that the chief end of humanity is to glorify God and enjoy him forever. Worship of our God with joy, delight, and pleasure is why we were made, and it is through the enlivening work of the Gospel that we experience the true joy that never fades. The psalmist captures it well in Psalm 73 when he says, "Whom have I in heaven but you? And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever." (Psalm 73:25-26).

Enlivened by the Gospel, We will engage God’s World with Winsomeness, Embrace God’s family with Welcome, and Enjoy God with Worship. What a story we are in! What a God we serve! He gives us the dignity of service, a family to embrace, and a relationship to enjoy! It is good news worth sharing and gives shape for a life worth living.

Each Sunday we start the week with a heaping portion of focused worship! This Sunday is no different as we commemorate Reformation Day with the next portion of our Philippians study (Philippians 3:1-11), which also happens to be a great text celebrating the truths of the Reformation, namely salvation by grace alone, through Christ alone, by faith alone!



Photo by Timothy Eberly on Unsplash