By Richard L Spangler
There have been many times in the ministry that I have led Praise and Worship during a service. During some of these times there was a mighty move of the Holy Spirit, with everyone getting caught up in worship and feeling like we were in heaven. I was in a Sunday night service recently where the Spirit of God was moving so strongly that three songs were given by the Holy Spirit. When the worship team began singing a new song, the whole congregation began to sing it as they had been singing it for years. It was an amazing time in the presence of God. Yet, there have been other times, when it was trying to breakthrough a steel reinforced concrete wall or like trying to pull teeth and not getting anywhere. I recently experienced this with the same worship team on a Sunday morning. The team was singing their hearts out, the pastor was encouraging us to enter in and there was nothing. We all, leaders and congregations, have experienced this in our services and it can be very frustrating. But Why?Does God on a given day decide that He wants to come and spend time with us and the time we gather He decides not today? I don’t think so, Adam was created to spend time with Father God. This was first the thing, before being given dominion over the earth, or anything else, this was first. God desired to have someone He could reveal Himself too. To enjoy the company and the love of someone that He created in His image. Even after man sinned God made a way for man to come into His presence by the work of His Jesus on the cross. Jesus paid the price for our sins and opened the way for our relationship with God.
Then, if it is not God, it must be us. We allow the cares of this life crowd in on us. Maybe, we’re thinking about what’s for lunch or about our finances or even the fight we had with our spouse on the way to church. We could be thinking about how we are unworthy to worship God because of the sin in our lives. What are we to do when these and other fill our minds when we are trying to worship God?
Start before you get you get to the church. Go to God and ask forgiveness. The Bible says, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9 (NIV). Also go and ask for forgiveness of those who you have offended, if possible. Then forgive those who have offended you, if possible. If not take it to God and tell Him that you repent of the offence that you did or tell God the you are forgiving those who offended you. Then forgive yourself.This clears the way for us enter the presence of God and shuts the voice of the accuser (Matthew 5:22-24 and Mark 11:25). Next is to decide to think on God instead of the day to day issues of life (issues at work, finances, the football game after church or where to go to lunch, etc.). In other words get rid of the junk. Begin to think about how much God loves you and how much you love God before you get to church.
The last and most important, is to have a daily relationship with the Lord not just a Sunday morning time of worship and praise. Keeping the attitude of forgiveness all the time and think on the Father daily. A personal, daily time of worship and praise is key. Invite the Father to be with you every day. Then, when it is time for corporate worship, you are already prepared to worship. You can enter His gates with singing and His courts with praise. You can enter boldly the Throne Room of God. Then you can worship the King of Praise.
You may ask, “Who is the King of Praise?” The answer is found in the Book of Revelation. It states, “Then one of the elders said to me, “Do not weep! See, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has triumphed. He is able to open the scroll and its seven seals.” Rev. 5:5 (NIV). We all know this to be Jesus. We also know the lion is a symbol for the King and Judah means praise. So Jesus is our King of Praise. We should worship and praise Jesus as The King of Praise.
©COPYRIGHT 2013 RICHARD L. SPANGLER
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