ORANGE TIP: Worship
I’ve been reminded and encouraged a few times this week about what worship really is and what it can look like. Romans 12:1 tells us that we should offer up our whole lives as a living sacrifice to God (“Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship.”) I read this as saying: with our whole being we should make it so that everything we do is out of worship to God. So this got me thinking – how do I do this? And how can I teach/demonstrate this pretty big idea to the kids and youth that I work with?
As a starting point, I was encouraged to identify the times of my day or week where I already show or could start showing my gratitude to God with my whole being. Things like praising God for how He provides for me day to day with a job and food on the table etc., actually working hard at that job to honour God and the people I work with, spending time praying and talking with God in the car on the way to work, marveling at and praising God for his beautiful creation every time I find myself amongst it (which is always!), singing songs of praise around the house/in the shower/in the car, being kind to my neighbours regardless of how they treat me – the list goes on! The main idea is that I use all my efforts and my whole being to praise and bring glory to God in the little things and the big things.
So that brings us to how to teach this stuff (which comes with a challenge):
I think it starts with us as role models, leaders and parents/guardians leading this out. I think we have a responsibility to be offering our lives as a living sacrifice to God so that our kids and youth can see plainly what it is and means to worship God as we follow Christ. This will not be easy – but I think it starts with us leading by example.
I think the next step is to be talking about this openly with our kids and youth. Explaining the reasons we go for nature walks/rides/drives/beach swims/sing/help the needy etc., along the way. Allowing our ‘worship moments’ when we’re around the kids/youth in our church to also be opportunities to teach/share how these are ways of worshiping God and bringing Him glory. Now, I’m not a parent and know very little about parenting, but I think I would have really benefited growing up from my parents sharing more with me about their everyday ‘worship moments’. I think it would have developed my understanding earlier that worship is not JUST singing songs in church for 15-20 minutes on a Sunday but is a whole-of-life expression.
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