It’s midweek and this morning the schedule took control of the day before I could. After re-calibrating my morning, I retreated to my office to sit down with my bible and direct my heart’s focus on God. I have a daily rhythm that consists of praying for “my people” that I’m interceding for, praying for my accounts, and praying for what I see God doing in my family’s life. It’s during this time that I make an effort to push into the secret place and pray before the presence of God.
This morning was different. I have a little prayer stone that the Lord showed me while at a prophetic conference. The stone was confirmation to a word he gave me about bringing the burdens of others before the Lord and petitioning him to do mighty works in their life. I was holding my black prayer rock and seeing their faces as I prayed. I started to sing to the Lord to stir an atmosphere of worship in my office. Then the Lord spoke, “I want you to sing the song you sang to me before bed when you were little.” Immediately tears started to flow from my eyes. I said to him, “You remembered that? I forgot about that, God.” And instantly I saw myself in my mind, laying in my day bed with my Laura Ashley bedspread and pillows, singing out to God in the night. The lyrics are simple, but they are a love song to the Lord:
“I love you, Lord. And I lift my voice to worship you, O my soul, rejoice. Take joy, my King, in what you hear. Let it be a sweet, sweet sound in your ears.”
“I cast all my cares upon you. I lay all of my burdens down at your feet. And anytime I don’t know what to do, I will cast all my cares upon you.”
When I began to sing those songs to God, I could feel his presence draw close to me just as he did when I was little.
The Heart of Worship
I think a lot of times, as Christians, we can complicate the process of worship. Or maybe we think worship has to look a certain way; the way the church does it, and so on. But the truth is, God just wants us to sing. To adore him for who is he, not what he can do for us. No agenda other than going into his presence.
I get emotional when I think about that little girl who sang out to the Lord every night at bedtime. I remember disrupting my dad who was trying to catch his last few z’s before getting up to work the night shift, yelling out to me to “BE QUIET, and GO TO BED!!!” I can’t imagine that I was belting out the song loudly, but it was something I never forgot. There were nights were I would whisper-sing because I didn’t want to get in trouble the next day. I couldn’t resist singing. It brought me comfort and peace.
Worshipping In the Dark Places
There’s a metaphor for the experience of singing out to God in the dark of night while everything around you rages, “BE QUIET!!! SHUT UP!” It’s during the darkest nights of life where we need his presence and comfort the most, and worship is the door we walk through to gain access to him.
It can be easy to go through the motions with prayer, praying for ourselves and others, but I want to encourage you today to drop everything and just sing a song to God. Give him your worship. Don’t make your quiet time today about what you need from God. Make it about adoring him.
Hebrews 13:15-16 says, “Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise– the fruit of lips that confess his name. And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased. Why is praise a sacrifice? Because sacrifice is DIFFICULT. It requires you giving something that perhaps requires you digging deep to offer up. Maybe you don’t feel like you have anything that you can praise or worship God for. Maybe your life looks like nothing you dreamt it would be, and the last thing you want to do is worship and praise God. But I say to you, when you least feel like worshipping is when you need to worship the most.
Let me encourage you to praise and worship your way through until the atmosphere shifts. Until your thinking shifts. Until your perspective shifts. It doesn’t have to look fancy. It can just be a time in your car with no distractions. No interruptions in your office. It can be at night time when the lights are out and you have no one or nothing vying for your attention.
I love this song by Phil Wickham to prepare my heart to go into the presence of God.
Greatly To Be Praised
“I will extol you, my God and King, and bless your name forever and ever. Every day I will bless you and praise your name forever and ever. Great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised, and his greatness is unsearchable” (Psalm 145: 1-3).
He is worthy of our worship. When you move into the presence of God with worship, you will see how big he becomes and how small your problems truly are. When you know your father is that big, your worries instantly diminish, your heart resets, and the things of earth will grow strangely dim in the light of his glory and grace.
He loves you. He’ll meet you in worship. Give him your worship today.