Summary: Finding our way in the worship of God.
"Finding the Heart’s True Home"
Aim: To teach what worship really is and encourage the congregation to BE worshippers.
What is worship? Is it singing Christian songs on a Sunday? Is it singing Christian songs any other day? Is it singing old songs? Or is it singing new songs? Is it just singing psalms? Is it about singing at all? Is it about rituals or about good feelings inside? You know, it’s not really about any of those things. OK, we might do some of those things when we worship, we sing every Sunday, but worship is really about us and God, about how we express our relationship with Him. Worship is not something we do for our own benefit, when we worship, it is not even for anyone else’s benefit, it is for one person and one person alone……GOD! As we are about to find out, worship is not something we just do on a Sunday, worship is a way of life, it is something we should be living out daily. Lets look at the passages we read earlier and see what we can learn about worship and about being worshippers.
1. Luke 10:38-42 Mary and Martha
Here we have Jesus visiting some very good friends, Mary and Martha, the sisters of Lazarus. We learn something very important from Mary and Martha about what God, what Jesus attitude to worship is. You see, Martha was one of those women who always wanted everything to be right, especially when someone like Jesus was around…she was very busy getting everything prepared in the kitchen because the Master had dropped by. I can imagine her in her kitchen, working away hard in the kitchen, all the while she sees her sister Mary just sitting by Jesus, listening to him, talking to him, spending time with him. I can imagine all the things she would have been saying under her breath until she gets so frustrated that she decides that she would get Jesus to tell her off for just sitting around talking to him when all the work was to be done.
Now, I am sure some of you are thinking, well, Martha is right, wee Mary should have been in the kitchen getting the dinner ready. She should get off her bottom and get working. And that just shows you how much we are like Martha.
But what does Jesus say? Well, he didn’t condemn Martha for doing the things that needed to be done, far from it, but he did tell her off for presuming that the way Mary was serving Jesus was not the right way. In fact, he says that Mary had chosen the better service didn’t he?
Mary and Martha both loved Jesus very much, but Martha didn’t realise that in her desire to serve Jesus, she was actually neglecting him. She was so busy at doing things for Him, that she had no time to spend with him. I know for a fact that there are indeed many Marthas in this corps.
You see, if we spend so much time doing things for Jesus, doing things for the Lord, but never spend time getting to know him, telling him how much we love him, then we are doing ourselves and Jesus out of the privilege of knowing him intimately.
Mary had her priorities right. Yes, she did know that Jesus would need served, but she got things in the right order. She spent time loving him, talking to him.
Friends, we need to spend time with God, alone, talking to him, telling him how much we love him. That might mean just talking, maybe even singing to him, but we need to spend that time. As Jesus said about Mary, the time spent in praising God is not wasted time, it is not laziness, it is what God expects and it will be beneficial to her life.
So, straight away, we are learning that worship is personal. It is something we can do alone with Jesus, it is about telling God we love him, and we can see that worshipping God is a priority, it is even more important that doing things FOR God.
That was Mary and Martha, lets look at our next example.
2. Luke 7:37-38 The Sinful Woman
Those of you who were here two weeks ago will recognise the woman in the passage, you will remember about how much she was forgiven. Now, I suppose you are wondering, what has she got to do with worship? Well we can learn something very important from her too.
When she was there with Jesus, there is one thing that stand out about the way she worshipped….it cost her a lot. Yes, it cost her financially, because she bought the jar and the oil, but more than that, it cost her herself.