What is worship

Worship is primarily a lifestyle, part of a constant dialogue between us and God.
It is something that can transform our lives and our day to day walk with God.

When talking about worship we can see several different aspects.

  1. Praise.
    This celebrates our salvation and is often the noisiest part of worship, in which we direct our thanks to God, and celebrate His goodness. It is the part of worship that can most readily be enhanced by being with others.
  2. Giving glory and showing reverence.
    Our attitudes and words show that we acknowledge God as our Master and that we are aware of the honour due to Him.
    This can however reveal our willingness to allow God to be the sovereign Master of our lives. Are we totally under His direction? When we sing of our obedience to God, do we mean it?
  3. Adoration and devotion.
    In this aspect we speak directly to God of our feelings for Him, of our love for Him and our gratitude to Him.
    It comes out of our heart, from our relationship with God. This may reveal the brokenness in our lives, if we cannot relate to God as a loving Father, and cannot bear to use intimate words in worship. Do we feel we can come into God’s presence without first earning an audience with Him? This part of worship can often bring the sweetest and most healing experiences in our lives. It is when we are most open to God.

They are very simplistic categorisations, but serve to help us understand what is happening at each point.

Why do we worship

  1. First and foremost because God requires it.
    Jesus reply to Satan, ‘Worship the Lord your God and serve Him only’, a quotation from Deut. 10:20 which is also translated “fear the Lord…”
  2. Because it puts God in His rightful place, right at the centre of our lives and attention.
  3. It does God good; He delights in our praise and worship.
  4. It does us good because we meet with God. This puts our own circumstances in perspective, held up against the endless resources of a mighty God.
  5. Because it releases the words, and therefore the power of the Kingdom, into this world. This makes it very effective spiritual warfare.

How do we worship

  1. 1. We decide to. Worship is not an issue of feelings, it is an issue of obedience. If God requires it…
  2. As we approach the goodness of God, our own sin becomes more evident. We can choose then whether to allow our sin to control us, or to lay down our will before God. If we are not able to get into God’s presence, ask what the problem is. Is there sin in our lives, ours or others that is getting in the way? We must not, however, allow ourselves to get ripped off by the enemy by allowing condemnation to take over. The enemy loves to get our focus on ourselves, making it impossible to focus on God.
  3. We allow God’s presence to overcome us, He loves to be with us.

When worship is part of our lives, it promotes an attitude of gratitude, it can help us through circumstances that are tough but also enhance the good times.

Missing the benefit

Being too focused on worship as an end in itself
Deciding that there is ‘only one true way to worship’.


© Paul Wood