On Worship, part deux

I’ve been hit with a flood of things I’ve been wanting to write about, and just haven’t had the willpower to write about them recently. Even now, I’m forcing myself to do this because it’s been a week since last time I wrote anything. And you’ll have to stick with me today, because my theological gyroscopes have been way off all day long (just ask my church music class).

Today, I was trying to make a point, and it completely backfired because I *may* have used a completely unbiblical example as part of my argument, and people didn’t generally like that, or whatever.

Anyways, the following few sentences are the point I was trying to make. This might make me a heretic, but understand that most of the things I write or say theologically often come out, and then I adjust my viewpoints later based on how heretical they were. So you may not agree with everything I say, but that is why I write; to fuel the thoughts not only in my own mind, but in yours as well.

I believe that ‘worship,’ in the context it is most often used today (meaning mostly songs and the parts of the service intermixed with that), is a one-way communication. I’m not saying that God can’t or doesn’t reach out and respond to us in that time of worship, but nonetheless it is inherently a one-way street. We were created to glorify God. That was our original and sole purpose for being created. So what that means is even if God never acted in our lives in any way, and even if he was never involved in our lives, and even if he never sent his son for our sins; we still have the responsibility to glorify him, because that is the reason we were created. I believe that prayer and scripture are our methods of two-way communication with God. We wait for him, and he responds to us. Now where this gets really tricky is where the line between the two is drawn. Because I do believe it’s possible to sing a prayer, but I don’t think that in itself contradicts my belief. Because although it may involve singing, the intent behind a prayer is still different than behind a time of ‘worship.’

The point I am trying to make is the intrinsic nature of our worship, and how the core of it should be nothing personal of selfish about it, but rather a complete act of selflessness. If we enter into worship as a two-way communication, then we enter into worship with selfish motive. Our worship does not hinge on whether or not God has ever or will ever do anything for us. He is deserving of our praise regardless. Now, I do believe that the fact God is intimately involved in our lives can lead to more passionate and zealous worship, but the point remains that even if he did none of those things, we still owe our glorification to him.

By no means is it wrong to expect a response from God. In fact, if God never responded, I doubt that any of us would be Christians today. And I don’t believe any of us would worship God if he was in no way involved in our lives. That just doesn’t make sense. But I believe it is important to enter into a worship time with the understanding that God deserves our worship regardless of what he has done. Even if I am going through a valley in my life, and have no desire to praise him, I still should enter into worship with the same amount of dedication to God. He deserves it no matter what.

I don’t want to get hung up on the separation of one-way versus two-way, because I don’t think it is necessarily important most of the time. I just think it is important the way we enter worship is always founded on the same principle. I may feel more like praising him at the end of school than I do the week before during finals, but my worship during finals week should be just as passionate as any other. It’s hard, and no way do I do it all of the time, or even most of the time, but it is what I am striving for in my worship. Excellence in my worship, and complete dedication.