May 15, 2017
The psalmist opens in the Hebrew with “Hallelujah” (“Praise the Lord”)! With this exclamation of praise, he both announces his intention and invites our participation. The psalmist is headed to the Temple to offer “whole-hearted” praise to Jehovah along with other worshipers. That’s what he is going to do. What are you going to do? Will you join him?
In order to bring whole-hearted worship, we must ask the Holy Spirit to help us examine our hearts. Does He reveal fire and zeal for the Lord there? If not, fan your faith into flame! There is no room for half-hearted passion in worship. Does He see anxiety and worry? Turn it into prayer and petition. Empty your heart in prayer that you may be filled with peace and praise. Does He uncover doubt or discouragement in you? Speak truth from the promises of God’s Word to your doubts and instruct your soul to lift up its countenance to the Lord. Ask the Spirit to root out any place in your heart where you are not worship-ready.
And then, bring your worship with you when you go to church. Arrive with intent to express whole-hearted worship, in song, in prayers, in Scripture reading, in hearing the Word preached, in tithes and offerings, and in response.
Whole-hearted worship doesn’t happen on its own. We must be intentional about expressing worship with our whole heart!
November 13, 2013
How to prepare yourself for church: The Psalmist announces his intent to praise and give thanks to the Lord. He describes what he will do, with what motive he will do it, where, and in whose company. He plans to sing, shout, give a thanks-offering (this is a free-will offering above his regular tithes and offerings) motivated by his whole-hearted love. And he plans to do it at God’s house surrounded by like-minded fellow worshipers who are doing the same. I want to go to church with this guy!
May 15, 2013
I am a life long student of God’s Word. Both my mother and my grandmother read the Word to me from birth, so that its stories have always been familiar to me. Yet, now as a man in my 5th decade, I still find something new in God’s Word every day. It’s more than an intellectual pursuit. My mother didn’t just read the Word to me, she delighted in the Word. And her obsession became mine. Do you know the joy of studying God’s Word?
November 13, 2012
A psalm that begins with “Hallelujah!” This psalm speaks of the author’s firm intention to be thankful as he meets with other believers in worship. An attitude of gratitude doesn’t come natural. We must choose to be thankful. Thankfulness and worship are connected. Both are responses to God’s wonderful grace. Thankfulness is a decided attitude. Have you decided to be thankful?
November 13, 2011
An awareness of the Almighty as Creator and King is in view here. Recognizing Him as God we are awestruck. Our knowledge begins with Him as Creator. Our decisions are guided by the understanding that He is Judge over all. Our passion is shaped by a desire to please and not disappoint Him.