We were planned for God’s pleasure. We are His children, and bring pleasure to God like nothing else he has created. He wants us to Enjoy life, not just endure it.
Worship: anything we do that brings pleasure to God is an act of worship. Anthropologists note that it’s a universal urge, an inbuilt need to connect w/God. If not God, we always find a substitute—Warren says even if it ends up being ourselves.
Worship is much more than the music, or the church service;
Worship isn’t for our benefit, but for God’s benefit. God’s heart isn’t touched by tradition in worship, but passion & commitment. The Bible says, “These people come near me w/their mouth & honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. Their worship of me is made up only of rules by men”.
Worship isn’t a part of our life, it is our life. Praise should be the first activity when you open your eyes in the morning & the last activity when you close them at night.
How is it possible to do everything for the glory of God? By doing everything as if we were doing it for Jesus. “Take your everyday life—sleeping, eating, going to work, & walking-around life–& place it before God as an offering.
Work becomes worship when we dedicate it to God & perform it w/an awareness of his presence.
When we first fall in love, we do everything to help us feel close to that person. Warren says by constantly thinking of his wife, he was abiding in her love. He states this is what real worship is all about—falling in love w/Jesus.
Question to consider: What common task could I start doing as if I were doing it directly for Jesus? Actually every task I do—but by placing it consciously before God as an offering, I will act differently, no longer routinely or indifferent. When I greet other worshippers in church or online, when I kiss my family in the morning & give them a hug before we each start our day, when I take the time to daily call my mom & see how her day is moving along, when I get involved in starting nonprofit projects to help different groups of people–each task takes on new meaning.
On Monday, my friend Anna, mom & myself went to see an icon of Holy Mary which had been brought up from Bethlehem for the first time, for one week to a Greek Orthodox church in Athens. Usually saints’ faces on our icons have serious looks–what struck us was the innocence, the slightest of smiles &, as Anna said, sense of hope which radiated from Holy Mary in this icon. A sense of peace & wonder penetrated thru the people in the church, who had taken the time from their busy everyday lives to pay reverence to Holy Mary this day. I will try to post the icon later today.
I hope for all of you that the sense of peace & hope she brought us, is brought into your lives this Christmas season.
* Weekly we will be writing about what inspires us from each consecutive chapter of Warren’s Purpose Driven Life. If you read along with us, plse share your inspirations. There’s no need to catch up, just jump right in.