Thinking Outside the Box

When I was younger, I thought I was obligated to like all the Christian songs I heard. I wondered what was wrong with me when this liking didn’t come.

This bothered me for years.

Actually it wasn’t until the last year or so that I realized that worship isn’t only what I hear on the radio. If I’m honest, I don’t like most of the “Christian” music I hear on the radio. A good deal of the songs I hear are shallow, and I don’t find my heart being lead to worship God, who is deeper than any human understanding, when the words are superficial. Not only that, most simply aren’t my style of music.

And there’s nothing wrong with that.

I’ve learned that worship isn’t reduced to what I hear on the radio, or even at church. Those songs can be worship, if they lead me to praise the Lord and speak of Him truthfully. But the thing is, anything that leads my heart to exalt my Savior Jesus is worship.

“Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” (Colossians 3:16-17)

Often I find my heart in this place when listening to music that would not necessary meet the stereotypical Christian definition of worship.

When listening to the my favorite song Promontory (an instrumental piece) my dad said the song made him think of the book of Revelation, when all are waiting for Christ to be revealed. As the music builds, the doors fling open and there is Jesus standing in all His glory.

He has a point; that piece does speak to me of Jesus, more clearly than any Christian song I’ve heard. Each time I listen to it I’m reminded of God’s glory and His deep, abiding, boundless love for me.

So what is it that I’m trying to say?

Worship cannot be boxed. It is not limited to just the songs we sing at church.

Worship is about lifting our hearts up to God and praising Him for Who He is and for the salvation He’s bestowed on those who believe.

Worship comes in all shapes and sizes.

Worship comes when I look at a beautiful piece of artwork – when I acknowledge Who is the greatest artist.

Worship comes when I admire creation – the work of God’s hands.

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Worship comes when I write – God is the Author of all life.

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Worship comes when I hear a breathtaking piece of music.

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Worship comes when I read.

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Worship comes when I play the piano.

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Worship comes when I spend time with the friends and family God has given me.

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Worship comes when I lift my heart up to God, this is what my heart was created to do. To sing to God.

“Man’s chief end is to glorify God by enjoying Him forever.” (John Piper, Desiring God)

We should live every moment with our hearts lifted to the Lord.

God is worthy of all praise. He is our Creator and Savior. Acknowledging Him in all that we do leads to worship. 

The heavens declare the glory of God,
and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.
 Day to day pours out speech,
and night to night reveals knowledge.
 There is no speech, nor are there words,
whose voice is not heard.
 Their voice goes out through all the earth,
and their words to the end of the world.
In them he has set a tent for the sun,
 which comes out like a bridegroom leaving his chamber,
and, like a strong man, runs its course with joy.
 Its rising is from the end of the heavens,
and its circuit to the end of them,
and there is nothing hidden from its heat.
The law of the Lord is perfect,
reviving the soul;
the testimony of the Lord is sure,
making wise the simple;
 the precepts of the Lord are right,
rejoicing the heart;
the commandment of the Lord is pure,
enlightening the eyes;
 the fear of the Lord is clean,
enduring forever;
the rules of the Lord are true,
and righteous altogether.
 More to be desired are they than gold,
even much fine gold;
sweeter also than honey
and drippings of the honeycomb.
 Moreover, by them is your servant warned;
in keeping them there is great reward.
Who can discern his errors?
Declare me innocent from hidden faults.
 Keep back your servant also from presumptuous sins;
let them not have dominion over me!
Then I shall be blameless,
and innocent of great transgression.
 Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart
be acceptable in your sight,
O Lord, my rock and my redeemer. 

Psalm 19

(All images are from Pinterest.)

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