“That Sunday eveningthe disciples were meeting behind locked doors because they were afraid of the Jewish leaders. Suddenly, Jesus was standing there among them! “Peace be with you,” he said.As he spoke, he showed them the wounds in his hands and his side. They were filled with joy when they saw the Lord!Again he said, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I am sending you.”Then he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit.”- John 20:19-22
“Jesus answered, Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not be amazed that I said to you, “You must be born again.” The wind blows where it wishes and you hear the sound of it, but do not know where it comes from and where it is going; so is everyone who is born of the Spirit.”
Today I was reminded of the faithfulness of God through the seasons of waiting in my life. And a light bulb went off in my brain: All this time, I thought I was waiting on God but reallyGod was waiting on me.
A wise friend once told me, “God is more interested in your heart than He is in your comfort.” Those words came back to me today as I realized that the past few years of my life have been SO DARN UNCOMFORTABLE. But the heart changes in me have been supernatural to say the least.
Sacrificing my comfort for a larger heart, a greater sense of purpose, and a closer walk with God has not been easy. But I can now see some beautiful embers aflame inside of me where there once was a mess of cold, dark coal. And when my flesh cringes and tries to turn away from a trying situation, I can now see that I am being invited into another opportunity for fiery heart change.
Why? More training in the uncomfortableness of life. We try so hard to avoid the messy and the nervous and the strange and the unfamiliar but God hasn’t called us to sit back and let life pass us by. He’s called us to move to the sound of His voice allowing the wind of the Holy Spirit to blow on our flickering heart flame when we’re not so sure. It’s called trust.
And I can honestly say that I’ve never felt so weightless and free in all my life. I don’t have to know how I’m gonna get from A to B or from this period of waiting to the time of doing. I just have to believe.
I woke up with this new song by Amanda Cook stuck in my head:
I’m in a funk this week. Feeling under the weather with a cold. Super tired and lacking desire to exercise. And my kids always seem to be the most rambunctious when I’m feeling the least motivated. 🙂
My get up and go has left the building with no hint as to when it’s gonna return. Blah is my current state of being.
But, I love how this song was in my brain when I woke up because, honestly, I did not feel like spending time in prayer or worship this morning. It’s like God implanted this sweet little reminder inside of me so I would want to come to Him first thing.
I love the words to this song because it reminds me that I don’t have to feellike worshiping to worship.
He knew that I would have slow days and tiring seasons. Yet He is still worthy to be praised (despite how I feel.)
So, today I took a time out from all things that tend to pull me away from His presence. And I worshiped. No tv. No books. (GASP!) No social media (ok, I did post pics of my kids being adorable on instagram but that was IT.)
His word says that His presence is where joy is found. And that He renews my strength. And that He gives rest to the weary.
All things that make my heart want to sing and my feet want to dance. I can’t even muster up the desire to come to him on my own. He gives that to me too. And I’m grateful. Where would I be without the Lord’s guidance in my life?
“Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks.” – John 4:23
What is the mark of a true worshiper?
Well, according to the scripture above, it means that worship is led by the spirit and focused on the truth.
I believe what Jesus was saying in our verse is that true worshipers don’t follow their flesh down paths that compromise the “tried and true” word of God.
This sounds like a heart issue to me. So, regardless of the style of worship music we sing or listen to, we are defined by the position of our heart during the music set.
Because, ultimately, all of us (whether on stage/radio or not) will have to make a choice. Does my heart line up with the words I’m singing or not?
Worship can look pretty daunting to those who don’t even understand how to engage the God of whom we worship. So, we must show them. The newbies to the Christian faith. The prodigals just longing for a taste of something real. The long lost soul who never trusted God because of weathering one too many storms in his life.
They all need to see that worship isn’t about the flash and the fame. It’s not about the big name or the high tech equipment. It can’t be about the large crowds or the sold out show.
It’s about looking heavenward with our hearts. Posturing ourselves in a way that invites others to worship the God of the universe, too. Being more excited about Jesus than we are about the band on stage.
Because, really, who are we trying to please? God is looking for you, dear worshiper. Give him your heartfelt praise.