It’s easy to be excited about Jesus when what He’s saved you from isn’t far behind. Emotions can carry us for a season, but what about when life levels out? The sweet by and by is typically where we get distracted, or sadly, go back to the mindsets that ruled us in our past. We trick ourselves. We clean up our speech, we don’t SHOW our anger at people, we try to pray and read the Bible every day, but is this worship?
What was it like for you when you became a Christian? Were you reading your Bible for hours a day trying to take in as much as possible? Were you telling everyone you met about Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior, making it more of a business deal than an invitation into a relationship? Maybe the grip of sin and fear was still chasing you down and your first season of faith was more warfare than you care to remember.
Whatever your beginning was like, chances are there was momentum involved-pleasant or not. Our physical lives are the same. When we’re young, a lot of change happens without much effort on our part and then slows down and comes to a seeming halt for years. After that, change comes intentionally. We gain or lose weight because we make a choice, either to eat right or to eat whatever we want. We either gain muscle by putting in the work at the gym or we stay the same—both are a choice.
Worship isn’t much different. It seems to come easily in the beginning but then loses its excitement. Some say it should become a natural expression of who you are. Ironically, the longer we believe the more it does become a natural thing-but just that-natural, and that’s okay. If you wait until you feel like it or some supernatural phenomenon comes upon you, you may never do it again. But if you make it a discipline, you’ll make more room for God to move. We don’t strong-arm our relationship with God—that will kill it every time. But we do start in the humble place of faith, without looking to our feelings to validate or initiate it.
We often think worship is singing songs and playing instruments. Yes, this is one expression of it, but what about someone who can’t speak? And why would God only gift some people musically and not others? Are those His favorites? Of course not.
Worship is about the disposition of your heart. It’s honoring God no matter what the task may be. Am I reading my Bible because I want to be able to answer the Facebook haters or because when I do I connect with God? Am I friendly and kind so people will like me or because it honors God to love those He loves? Do I stay in shape to honor God or get attention?
Working worship into your life isn’t religious or fake-it actually takes more faith. Choosing to worship and honor God before you feel anything takes some bravery, and shouldfeelings even the goal to begin with?
In a culture of excitement, we tend to want to be moved again and again. With endless media bent on getting our attention and impressing us, it’s no wonder worship isn’t easy, and we tend to drift from it. Has it caused us to worship hoping we’ll regain the excitement we had at the beginning? Jesus said that whoever tries to save his life will lose it. Have we lost the joy of new life because we’ve made it about ourselves rather than the God we were so excited about to begin with?