by Nick Tucker – Associate Pastor – Youth and Worship
The Heart of Worship
When I first started coming back to church in high school, I did not fully understand worship in the way I do now. I thought it was a bit bizarre to sing with arms raised in the air. I thought it was strange for those around me to dance and jump around during worship. I had to deconstruct my view and prior thoughts about worship and allow myself to learn and develop in it!
We tend to have a view of worship that is simply just music, or just Sunday morning, but it is so much more than that. Worship is a posture of the heart that we are called to. Naturally as humans, we look to worship something. We were created to worship.
Author John Stott references Psalm 105:3 in his book Christian Basics in response to being asked the question “What is worship?” Check out what the Psalm says in verses 1-4 in the NIV translation:
“Give praise to the Lord, proclaim his name; make known among the nations what he has done. Sing to him, sing praise to him; tell of all his wonderful acts. Glory in his holy name; let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice. Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always.”
I love this Psalm as it pertains to worship. Words within it that embody the heart of worship like praise, proclaim, sing, glory, rejoice, seek. I think these all give a fantastic look into what it truly means and looks like to worship and notice how none of the statements in Psalm 105 talk about where to do it, simply just how.
For me, I hope to accomplish all these things every time I am in worship. Whether it’s on a Sunday morning at church, or in the middle of nowhere and I’m simply surrounded by creation, my heart wants to cry out the praises of His name for how awesome He is. Let me tell you though, this took a lot of work and a lot of time to get to this point in understanding worship.
I speak frequently about permission to worship wild, and worship free. Sadly, I think that the culture around worship is rather timid for most people (I was there). I think that a lot of people probably think, “I’m not confident enough to worship wild” (I was there). However, a question comes up from this. Where does our confidence come from? For me, when I shifted my confidence coming from my own abilities and understanding to God’s abilities and understanding, I stopped caring about whether I was confident enough to worship, and more about the fact that He is worthy of being worshipped!
My prayer and hope around worship is that our general disposition would be to praise, proclaim, glorify, rejoice, and seek.
Praise God for all He has done, and for His character. For the way which He works, transforms and restores.
Proclaim His name and the gospel throughout the world. Let our heart of worship shine through us and be enough proclamation that people would ask what it is that’s shining.
Glorify His holy name. In all we do, let the glory be to God and let Him be the name that’s remembered.
Rejoice in the good, the bad, and everything else around it. Rejoice in the suffering because of the way He walks with us in it. Because He grows us through it.
Seek Him in our worship. In our day-to-day life. Seek Him for strength, wisdom, joy, confidence, peace, patience, self-control. Seek His voice in the silence and the noise. Seek Him.