Posts Tagged ‘serving God’

How Can I Serve God Best?

October 3, 2017

 

So many people feel we aren’t really serving God unless we are doing something boring, unpleasant or anything we would rather not be doing.  What a false picture of God.

There are so many ways to serve. And God is generous in letting us serve in those places that give us joy.  Do you have a heart for widows? Does it give you joy to help them–especially those who are lonely? Does it give you joy to work with the elderly, the homeless, or children? Does it give you joy to be outdoors, or to do crafts? Do you like to work with groups, or quietly alone? Well, you get the idea. God doesn’t mind that we work with the particular age group or situation we feel drawn towards. And He doesn’t mind that we use skills we enjoy using. These are the ways we can give the best of ourselves–just as he made us.

 

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What is Worship

March 8, 2010

This morning’s message was on worship.  While taking notes, I made lots of my own observations–reflections on the reflection, so to speak.  Anyway, a “fleshed out” version of my total note page follows.

What is worship?  The pastor likes the definition “loving God back”.  I like that too.  How can worship even be worship without love?  How can a phone call to a parent, made out of duty and without love have any value at all?  If I’m loving God back, it explains why the scripture tells us to “lift up holy hands”.  A little child lifts up its hands to its parent, saying “pick me up”, “I want you”, “I want us to hug”.  Since we are to come to our heavenly father as little children, lifting up our hands conveys all that childlike emotion and desire.

God loved me even before I was formed.  The scripture says God watched my formation and recorded the prenatal events in his book.  How like a pregnant mother!  That is love!!  I want to love him back with my whole heart.  How can I do that?  Love requires expression for its life.  How can I express that love to God?

I can offer God my whole day.  If I think of my daily life as an offering, it changes the way I see it.  In this day of offering, I can look for “divine appointments”.  I can be on watch for things God would like to show me.  I can be primed to show gratitude and appreciation for the things, people and events all around, for which I owe God thanks.  I can ask for and watch for an opportunity to share God’s love with someone else who needs that encouragement.  I can also watch for opportunities to serve God’s kingdom in some way.  I can be aware of the need to be loved–my own and that of others.  Everyone wants love and everyone wants to belong to something wonderful and bigger than themselves.  Everyone actually wants Jesus, although they can argue they don’t.  They aren’t being honest about what is keeping them from Him.  Jesus always demands that honesty, and will go right to the heart of that issue if we aren’t too busy pushing Him away.  When he probes us, sharp though it is, He always touches us with His tenderness.

Jesus said God wants worship in Spirit and Truth.  We worship in truth when we use our intellect.  It is based in growing knowledge of God and His ways.  Worship in spirit is emotional and is based on growing love and appreciation of God.  The “AHA” moments of discovery involve worship in truth.  The misty eyes and lump in the throat involve worship in Spirit.  We can’t have one without the other.   Spirit without truth results in emotional excess (there is such a thing), and  Truth without spirit results in dead intellectualism.  (I think its the reason theological schools can produce agnostics). 

Its not up to us to figure out how to worship God.  It is responding to God who moves first.  We worship as God instructs us both in the scripture and by His Spirit.  Its our spirit connecting to God’s Spirit.

Why do people find church boring ?  They don’t come expecting to meet God there.  They come for a bundle of other reasons, but don’t come to show their love to the God they already know and appreciate.  Worship is never about us, never for what we receive, and God forbid not about our entertainment.  Its about God’s Spirit touching our spirit, and when that happens, the worship style is irrelevant.  We can be touched in formal “high church” as well as a noisy “rock church”.  All that matters is coming into God’s presence, letting ourselves be open to God and grateful to Him, and the fruit of that is more love.  Its the love that the world will see on Monday.  If not, something was missing on Sunday.

Lord Let Me Be a Paintbrush in Your Hand

February 20, 2010

Lord, let me be a paintbrush in your hand.

Let me be in the bundle of brushes you hold in your hand as you paint your eternal masterpiece.  Let me stay a usable brush; pliable, so that I move as you move, and your colors flow through me. Let me not stiffen against your will either through neglect, carelessness or contrariness.  Keep me filled with the color of your choice and not wander beyond your limits for me, for that will muddy my colors and the colors of those around me.

Lord, grant me glimpses of the beauty you create.  I need an occasional insight to keep me encouraged.  Help me realize I’m too small, too bound and too close to the action to ever see your big picture while I’m down here.  Someday you’ll take me far away where I can see your work in all its loveliness.  Meanwhile, as a brush, I can take no credit for the beauty you’ve created, but I am so happy that you chose to use me.

Nothing is Happening Part 2

October 28, 2009

Once I prayed with great anguish:  “Lord, I’ve prayed and prayed for You to use me, and nothing is happening.”  The answer I received in my spirit was awesome.  I sensed the Lord saying to me:  “Child, are you willing to let me use you, even if I don’t reveal to you what I am doing?  If I use you mightily, in the dark so to speak, and you become aware of it, might you not become puffed up?  If you begin to think too highly of yourself, you may take over the work yourself and cease to be my servant.”

Servant or Companion

October 28, 2009

I had planned a fishing trip with my son.  The fishing was secondary to much anticipated time of conversation, sharing and just being together.  However, my son had other ideas.  He assumed it was more important to cut  my lawn, and that this would also be more pleasing to me.  He spent the morning and half the afternoon working, paid me a short visit and then was off to his own plans.  How sad I was for what I missed and for what he had missed too.  I could have easily hired out the lawn work.  He didn’t know that, of course, for he never asked me about the lawn–just assumed I’d want it done and assumed I’d be pleased.

Imagine for a moment that we do the same thing to God.  We often do many works with the idea we are serving God and pleasing Him, but our prayers are cursory.  God wants people who will walk with Him, talking with Him, waiting for Him, and watching for his answers.  When we serve alongside Him, letting Him teach us and guide us, we are spending time together.  Its the fishing trip He planned.

The First Commandment

August 10, 2009

I am to love God with my whole heart, soul, mind and strength.  That is what I was made for, and any other loves flow from that primary relationship.  Even my love for my neighbor flows from, is directed by and empowered by God.  How many of us can say we love God with our whole anything?  We are all doubleminded, and I think that is the root cause of sin.  In fact, that IS the sin: self centeredness.  I used to think of ways I could show God how I loved Him.  That was actually self-centered.  How astounding to think it could be self-centered to imagine ways to love and serve God!  The thing is, when I imagine how I will love and serve God, it is all beginning with me.  I am determining what my God will ask of me.  How can I say God has first place in my life if my very love and service begins with me.  If God truly has first place in my life, I approach Him humbly, confessing I fall short in loving Him as He deserves, and ask Him to show me how to love and serve Him.  Then I obey what He shows me.