Summary: Psalm 95 teaches us the importance of worship as a part of a chritian's devotional life. Worship is the first and highest priority. Therefore, it is the ksy to a successful prayer life.
A Call to Worship and Praise
In this series, we are developing an understanding of the basic disciplines necessary to build a devotional life with the Lord. We have seen that the Bible teaches us three basic habits we must develop in order to have a truly vibrant devotional life. These three habits are bible study, prayer, and meditation.
For the next two weeks, we will focus on developing a strong prayer life. There are only two ways to build any relationship, either a spiritual on or a human one: spending time together and communicating. Prayer is both for us in our relationship with the Lord. Since many folks struggle with the how to's of prayer, here is a short hand plan for guiding you in your prayer time with the Lord. Simply remember the word PRAY as a guide.
Basic Instructions for Prayer:
An effective prayer life begins with Praise and Worship. It is more than the first leter of the acrostic - it is the key to your relationship with the Lord. Too many folks begin their prayer with asking. Others come with doubting. The key is to begin by first praising the Lord. Here are a few quotes on worship that illustrate this truth.
It is in the process of being worshipped that God communicates His presence to men. C.S. Lewis
Worship is the missing jewel in modern evangelicalism. … It’s the one shining gem that is lost to the modern church, and I believe that we ought to search for this until we find it. A.W. Tozer
Worshipping God is the great essential of fitness. If you have not been worshipping…, when you get into work you will not only be useless yourself, but a tremendous hindrance to those who are associated with you. Oswald Chambers
Praise and Worship is the key to …
1. Experiencing the presence of the Lord
The key phrase here is in verses one and two. We are to come into the Lord's presence with singing, shouting, and joy. IF you come into His presence asking, then you are focused upon yourself or your circumstances. You will miss His power, presence, love, and peace that He has for you. When you come into presence by praising Him then your focus will upon Him. He has you where He wants you now to reveal to you His power, preence, love, and peace.
2. Understanding the person of God
The key verses here are three through five. Here we some beautiful pictures of the awesomeness of God. Consider verse four. The deepest part of the ocean that man has yet to even find, God holds that in the palm of His hand. When you praise the Lord for who He is, you begin to focus with more of an intent on truly seeing who He is. We see His omniscience, omnipresence, and His omnipotence. Circumstances and struggles begin to pale in comparison to the magnitude of God. Our own view of ourselves changes as we see ourselves in light of Almighty God.
3. Developing a relationship with the Lord
Verses six and seven give us the key to our relationship with the Lord. It is to surrender yourself to Him in worship. Verse six begins by saying "come let us worship and bow down." The only way to begin your relationship with the Lord Jesus is to bow down before Him. (See Philippians 2). The only way for a believer to deepen a relationship with Jesus is by the continual choice to surrender. After "bowing before" Jesus, see how the relationship becomes personal. We are His - possession. We are His sheep - He cares for us.
4. Obeying the Lord
In our relationship with the Lord, we are always called to obedience. Verses seven through eleven remind us of this fact clearly. In your walk with Jesus, he will always call you to obedience. Your life is the constant and never-ending process of growing to become more like Him. That means He is changing you by removing and adding things - attitudes, choices, habits. The importance of worship to this process is that you are in a frame of mind to obey. You see Him as God and the one with the authority to rule. You also Him as your shepherd and recognize He loves you and this process is for your good.
Through this beautiful Psalm we can learn that truly worship is the key to an effective devotoinal life.