We all have our various preferences during worship, do we not?
Whether we like praise over worship or vice versa, or prefer some songs and instruments more than others, we all seem to be more spiritually responsive to certain elements of Sunday worship. But what I've learned over this past year is that my favourite form of worship isn't tied to church services at all.
What is worship?
Not everyone may agree, but I see many more ways of worshipping than just the mainstream singing and dancing. To me, worship is relishing in God's wonder, it is acknowledging God for who He is, it is taking that time to build your relationship with Him in ways different from reading His Word or relying on Him for something.
Worship is a time when we fully allow ourselves to see who He is and praise Him as King and Saviour, as Holy and Anointing, as Father and Creator. We can never fully comprehend how immense and amazing our Lord is, but we what we can grasp is truly breathtaking and worth our attention.
Worship is also emotional. It is a time when we connect to God and whether it be in love alone, or reverence or joy or submission, it all brings glory to God. Ergo, worship is not restricted to Sunday service singing and dancing. It can be through creating things like art or writing, it can be through admiring and caring for nature, it can be showing hospitality or running or obeying God by acknowledging and following His command to jump on a plane and go.
It is a unique experience between you and God.
Do not lose heart
Keep in mind however, that worship should not be something that is simply cast aside or neglected when you are "not in the mood" for it; we cannot let our present situations and emotions get in the way of our relationship with God.
Neither does that mean we should feign happiness in worship—that would be unhealthy and unhelpful. Instead, it means laying down our obstacles at Jesus' feet and putting our attention on God for a time, trusting that He will take care of each of us in the midst of whatever ails us.
Are you stressed? Angry? Busy? Take the time to just put that aside for a few moments and remember where God is and who God is. Through everything, He is King, He loves you, and He will neither leave you nor forsake you.
I am confident that putting aside your problems for a while to worship God ends up lightening the load of the burden and makes things flow easier as you let God move in and do His own thing in your situation.
The stars are my favourite
Coming back from a fieldtrip in the West Coast, my class and I were driving through Arthur's Pass at about 2am in the morning and let me tell you the stars were fantastic. I was lost in reverie as I stared out the window focusing on them and seeking God in a time of contrite distress.
They were so bright and wonderful with no pollution obstructing their vibrancy and I could not help but fall in love with them. Now, every night when I am outside or having trouble sleeping, I look up at the stars and am filled with awe. Each time they give me peace and the Holy Spirit floods me with His presence.
This is how I praise Him most frequently. I simply admire His creation, His beauty; acknowledge His Glory; allow myself to sink into the wonders of His presence.
My love for Him becomes reflected in the stars: immeasurable, uncontainable. They exude His Glory to the point where I cannot think of the stars without God and the concept of Glory present in my thoughts. They are bound together indefinitely.
What worship is not
This does not mean, however, that anything you do that acknowledges God as the Supreme One in our lives is worship. Simply setting aside a moment to go "Jesus is King" to yourself in the mirror or buying that stranger a cookie is not worshipping God just because you acknowledge His Lordship or provide for someone.
Worship is ultimately a matter of the heart.
Sabrina Meyer is in her second year at university studying English and History with a knack for procrastination and a passion for learning. Her spare time consists majorly of reading, watching YouTuber 'Let's Plays' and getting overly enthused about K-pop, with a dash of gaming to throw in the mix.
Sabrina Meyer's previous articles may be viewed at http://www.pressserviceinternational.org/sabrina-meyer.html