Slightly Obsessed #062 "Pure Worship" (Wednesday Devo) by Pamela Thorson on 2014-02-26 12:45:33
Present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, which is your spiritual service of worship. –Romans 12:1
The three huge screens beam the words so everyone in the entire building can see them. The worship team moves seamlessly from one song to the next as the service begins. A few people scurry breathlessly in and find their seats as the music plays.
A young woman in the row in front of me combs through her purse. She glances down at her daughter, who squirms and bobs in and out of her chair. The girl and her mom talk in stage whispers, fidgeting in unison. I close my eyes and redirect my attention back to the music. Are we already on the last song?
Too soon, it’s over. We enjoyed a beautiful song service. But had I worshiped?
In the Bible, worship is associated with reverence, obedience, and submission. It often followed a moment of revelation of the greatness of God. It came as the people faced terrible enemies and sought His deliverance. It became an expression of awe, a sign of surrender, a declaration of trust.
I love the praise service at church. I enjoy the music, the heart of the worship leaders, the fidgeting children, and singing my heart out with my friends. But I know that the call to worship is so much more. It commands our attention. It requires a change in attitude. It demands a decision.
In Genesis 22:5 we read that as Abraham prepared his beloved son for sacrifice in obedience to God’s command he told the others, “Stay here with the donkey, and I and the lad will go over there; and we will worship and return to you.”
As Moses interceded for the Israelites, he “made haste to bow low toward earth and worship” in the presence of God. (Ex. 34:8 NASB)
King Jehoshaphat and all of Judah fell down with their faces to the ground and worshipped the Lord before going out to war against their enemies. (2 Chronicles 20:18)
The disciples worshipped Jesus when He walked on water to reach their boat and calm the storm. (Matthew 14:33).
The most pure act of worship I was privileged to witness didn’t happen at church but in an intensive care unit. The young man in the bed was paralyzed from the neck down. He lay limply against the sterile white sheets. The ventilator keeping him alive pumped air into his lungs, which were now infected with pneumonia. He had just survived a respiratory code in which he had nearly died and had to be resuscitated.
When I entered the room, his two brothers stood weeping at his feet. My husband and I walked to his bed. It was the first time I had seen our son since his transfer from the hospital in Canada, where the accident had occurred.
Then he whispered a request. He asked us to lift his hands to God. His father took his lifeless right arm, I took his left, and we stretched our son’s hands toward heaven. Toward His Father. Like a child reaches for his daddy. I don’t remember what we said or prayed that day. It didn’t matter. We were worshipping.
God heard our cries and delivered our son. Eternity will not be long enough to serve such a King. How has God captured your heart and brought you to a place of pure worship?
About Pamela Thorson:
Pamela Thorson is a licensed practical nurse, author, and full-time caregiver. She pioneered in the homeschooling movement from 1982-2006 and authored her first book, Song in the Night, in 2008. She resides in the Northwest with her family.
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A video posted on the suspect’s Facebook page depicted the man in his car facing the monument as a women’s voice, presumably on a car radio, asked, “Where do you go when you’re faced with adversity and trials and challenges?”
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Has a more beautiful declaration ever been written? Without that truth, we would have been forever lost to life. But because God had all authority firmly in His grasp, Satan had no chance of wresting the universe from Him. Because God reigns, Jesus could heal sickness, forgive sins, and conquer death. Because God is in control, evil was outwitted. Because He is Lord, there is power behind the words, “It is finished.”
Slightly Obsessed #186: When the Path Ahead Is Fearsome
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Slightly Obsessed #185: Clean
They were just turning down the lights in the sanctuary as I awkwardly slid into a seat near the back of the church. I was tired and soiled by the previous week. Life had been especially difficult, and I had not handled the pressure well. I felt completely unhinged spiritually and wholly unworthy to be in God’s presence. The worship team began with one of my favorite songs, and I hoped I didn’t look as vulnerable as I felt.
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The infant finishes his bottle and smiles contentedly up at his mother. A trickle of milk courses down from the corner of his mouth. It’s a sweet scene because that’s what babies do. They are born with immature digestive systems and no teeth. Mother’s milk or formula are necessary for the child to survive and thrive. As they grow, their teeth begin to come in, their digestive abilities mature, and they can tolerate solid food.