Posts Tagged ‘Worship’

Let’s talk about the gods most of us worship.

Perhaps it’s not the God known to many people, including those who follow Jesus of Nazareth (who many believe is the Son of God). That’s probably who the creator of this meme, found on an atheist website, was thinking about.

So who — or what — god might it be? The list of candidates is, sadly, longer than Pinocchio’s nose.

  • Wealth: how many people sacrifice relationships, family life, peace and even a good night’s sleep trying to fill their bank accounts to overflowing? And how much do we really, really need to retire comfortably?
  • Toys: Are our garages big enough to hold the boats, RVs, ATVs and riding lawnmowers that our culture says we should own? Can I find the space needed to cram an 85-inch flat-screen TV into the family room?
  • Career: Is it enough to be a regional manager? Wouldn’t my resume look even better if I was a vice-president? Or maybe a government cabinet minister?
  • Public image: How many of us strive to look endlessly happy and witty on social media?
  • Sex: According to the publisher of adult-entertainment trade publication XBIZ, the North American pornography industry earns at least $6 billion annually. Can anyone credibly insist it’s not a god to millions?

I’m not off the hook here. My wife can easily advance the case that my photography hobby (obsession?) and computer are gods that I kneel before.

So what about you? If you look hard in the mirror, can you admit one or more of these gods sits on the throne of your life? And admit they’re probably not providing the satisfaction and purpose that our culture insists they should?

I write all this to tell you the creator of the universe leaves all these petty little gods in the dust. Why? Because wealth, toys, career, public image and sex couldn’t possibly care less about YOU in this life or the life to come. And when this life ends, all those little gods are left behind like smelly litter.

Believe it or not, the creator of the universe knows YOU and cares about YOU. Jeremiah, an ancient prophet, puts it like this: The Lord says, “I love you people with a love that continues forever.”

Maybe you’ve read that statement, then looked at your life or at the state of our planet and declared “no way”. So just consider these facts:

  1. Rock-hard evidence of God’s love for YOU is the gift of freewill. That gift is why this world is in its current broken state.
  2. Imagine how much worse things would be if God wasn’t involved in the world, if He wasn’t working in ways you and I will never understand in this life. No, don’t imagine it because that’s depressing. Just consider being thankful.

So what do you do with this love? Let me suggest a radical answer: accept God’s gift of His Son Jesus of Nazareth. When you accept Him and follow Him, God know longer sees the bad things you’ve done and the good things you’ve failed to do. He only sees His Son’s perfection, transferred onto you.

Sound like a good deal? Yes or no, post your thoughts below and let’s have a conversation.

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What’s with this “worship” thing?

I used to ask that question when I passed by churches and the sign referred to Sunday “worship services”. Or, if I was at a service and the musicians started playing “worship songs”.

I just couldn’t figure it out. Why would the creator and master of time, space and the universe need us to worship Him? Does that mean He has a universe-sized ego that requires stroking? Really?? If that’s the case, why? I mean, it’s not like he has a lot of competition from other gods, right?

I used to ask my Jesus-following friends about this, but never received a credible answer. And those questions were among the things that kept me from having a relationship with God and Jesus. I associate monumental egos with Adolf Hitler, Osama Bin Laden and torture killers like Paul Bernardo. So if that was part of God’s makeup, then I wanted nothing to do with Him.

I’m not sure when that changed, but as someone with a deep and life-long passion for music, it had to do with hearing songs by amazing spiritual artists such as Russ Taff and Whiteheart, both popular in the 1980s and ’90s. In a literate and talented way, these folks presented a very different picture of God than the one I grew up. And that picture sure didn’t fit with an egomaniac.

So I started to worship. THEN I understood and that took me to a deeper place with Jesus (who many people believe is the son of God).

Here’s the deal: think of your relationship with your spouse/significant other as a micro-version of your relationship with God. When you express love for your spouse/significant other, that opens the door for them to return the favour.

That’s how it is with God. When I stand in church, or at a concert, and tell Jesus how much I love Him, I’m lowering the drawbridge to my heart and soul to receive that love back. And guess what? That’s exactly what happens.

Until we make that love offering – to our spouses/significant others AND to God – we just aren’t in the right emotional and spiritual place to receive it back. But when we do, it’s an incredible bargain because we receive far more than what we ‘put out’. At least that’s my experience.

What do you think…does this put the notion of worshipping God into an understandable and – more importantly – credible place for you?

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