Wednesday, March 05, 2008
My Personal Discoveries Regarding Praise and Worship
NO MORE EXCUSES!
I can no longer say, “I’m just not like that”, “That’s just not my personality”, “I just praise Him differently than that” or things like this. If I’m a living sacrifice that is dead to this flesh, none of these excuses have a leg to stand on.
I am no longer my own to dictate what I will do and won’t do. I must no longer be guided by my emotions. I either gave Him ALL of me or I didn’t - 1 Cor. 6:19&20, Luke 17:9&10
The Word states that if I don’t praise Him, the rocks will. Rocks! Rocks are cold, hard, stationary things. The way I see it, if they’re capable of worshipping the Lord, how in the world have I convinced myself that I can’t?
I can no longer allow the fear of men to dictate my public praise and worship. I CANNOT be a bond-servant to the Lord and seek to please men – Gal. 1:10, Matt. 10:37&39
If it’s not enough to be birthed out of my love for Him, I have been COMMANDED to worship Him. Am I seeking to please Him or am I seeking to please others and myself?
WHAT ABOUT WHEN I DON’T FEEL LIKE IT?
Why do I not want to?
Is He not worthy?
Am I allowing my emotions to dictate and determine who I am?
Am I focused on everyone who will see me EXCEPT my Father?
Romans 8:12&13 – “I am under obligation, but not to my flesh… but by the Spirit, I am putting to death the deeds of the body, then I will live” (paraphrased)
God wants all of me, all the time. Anything less than all is choosing to wrap myself up in my smelly, dead, old, flesh man.
“But what about those crazy, in the flesh, shouters and hoop-and-hollerers that are only doing it to draw attention to themselves? I don’t want to be like them!” Forget about them. This about me and my Father, not them.
Jesus NEVER said, “Father, I’m just not in the mood today, find someone else”.
It all boils down to my not loving Him enough - 2 Sam. 6:14a, John 7:38
I am now a temple, a tabernacle for God Himself to dwell. The Holy of Holies is within me. When I surrender more of myself – each time another “compartment” within me is emptied of control. He then sees more room for Himself to dwell. He moves into that area – He expands His throne room that is within me! When this expansion takes place, via my surrender, great victory and power come. I quickly begin to literally feel empowered! It’s just like conquering fears or overcoming inhibitions – great freedom comes in the overcoming!
God wants free, spontaneous, unbridled praise and worship that flows from my hearts love for Him – Isaiah 29:13-15
God inhabits my praises! When He comes, healing comes. When He comes, victory comes. When He comes, His attributes come. I must be a place filled with praises, inviting Him to dwell.
What I deem as “radical” or “out there” is simply rational, reasonable and “normal”. Complete surrender and outward expression is what is expected of me - Romans 12:1
When I worship, the Lord joins in with me. When worship from my innermost being comes into agreement with God’s heart, it looses “the sound of a mighty rushing wind” and things move. (Pentecost and Zeph. 3:16&17).
Nothing less than my complete surrender will do! I will NOT go further in Him by His Word alone. I cannot continue to study the Word and develop a relationship with Him and NOT openly praise and worship Him. I will hit a ceiling that is built by my disobedience to yield. I cannot simply read about praise - I must do it!
How can I look at the OT temple model that was upon the earth – seeing the importance of undignified praise and worship – and yet think for even a moment that He will dwell in this temple without it? How much more should I be worshipping Him now, not out of duty, but out of love and adoration!
I can no longer convince myself that I can be spiritually victorious WITHOUT unashamed, open praise of my Father. It’s a lie that the “original worship leader” (lucifer) has used well for far too long. I will no longer have veiled eyes and live a life of making excuses!
The depth of love that I have for my Father is exhibited in my praise and worship of Him. If I get all shy, inward-thinking, defensive and uptight when I think about joyful praise, it is signifying a deeper heart issue. I must get to a place where I can exuberantly express my great love for Him in ANY circumstance!
Is it really no longer I that live but Christ in Me?
If God relied upon me alone for ALL of the worship upon the earth – if it all depended on me, what worship would He be receiving?
For me personally, worship just seems to happen relatively easy. It requires a much smaller level of response or submission of my flesh. I’ve quickly found however that praise is a whole different story. True praise demands that my flesh, my body becomes involved... and often with other people! (ugh!) I absolutely have to, at times, force this body to yield control and praise Him. Just like I have to make it submit to the Spirit and deny it’s urges, I must also make it submit and praise my Creator, for now. But victory and freedom WILL come!
I will ALWAYS be declaring something. When I keep my hands in my pockets instead of raise them high - when I stand staunch instead of dance - when I murmur instead of shout – when I subdue any action, movement or declaration – when I’m looking around wondering what everyone else thinks of me (like they do anyway) instead of gazing at my Father - I am declaring to the heavens and the earth that God is NOT worthy of my praise. It’s really that simple, isn’t it? I will WILLINGLY surrender – I will kill this flesh that wants control – I will continue, instance by instance, to yield and live out of the spirit within me. I will no longer be held to this earth with iron boots called fear and pride!
When I release, when I surrender, when I yield, GREAT victory comes! Here I’m choosing to embrace the living and laying the dead on the altar. My spirit comes alive! True life, abundant life, bubbles up and overflows into every other area of my life.
I will no longer allow my surroundings to dictate my praise and worship! I willingly choose to live a life of praise and worship that dictates my surroundings!