Summary: Worship, The Heart, Priorities, Preferences
I WILL – “I Will” Worship with Others
Acts 2:46-47 (pg. 759) October 11, 2015
We have a rule at the Burdette household that my daughter and wife continue to break and disregard...Here’s the rule: If you’re playing “Phase 10” with me (it’s a family card game that I dominate...not really) you cannot be playing “Candy Crush” on your phone at the same time...or you cannot be constantly checking your Facebook on it at the same time.
It’s my firm belief that if you want to spend time with me and the family...then give me your undivided attention...Karissa will say, “I only do it while you’re dealing...Kari just gives me “THE LOOK.” Guys “you know the look I’m talking about, don’t you?” (DEMONSTRATE)
Family time is really important to me...whether it’s around the table for dinner, or time playing “Phase 10.” I don’t want to share you with “Candy Crush” or “Facebook” during this time.
I think our heavenly Father feels like that when it comes to our worship as His family...I don’t want to share you with “Nursery Crush” or “Sports” or a million other things that pull us away from the family table...and relegate Him from a connected Dad to a spectator who watches us do other stuff.
Let me emphasize that worship in scripture has two distinct components...a daily worship where we are aware of His presence in all activities....
Paul tells the brothers and sisters in Rome “In view of God’s mercy offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God – this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – His good pleasing and perfect will.” (Romans 12:1-2)
Clearly the Apostle is saying “Our daily lives connect us with God or the world. His Spirit transforms our thinking...or the world shapes our minds...if you want to be in God’s will...to know He’s working in and through you...offer yourself to Him as you live...This is your personal lifestyle of worship.
But there is also worship that involves connecting to Him with other believers...it’s family worship...and there’s a gathering around a table involved in this worship as well.
How do we move Christians from:
I. BEGRUDGING PARTICIPATION TO JOYOUS COMMITMENT?
It seems in our busy culture we have to beg people to attend worship services.
Thom Rainer writes “But so many have inexcusable conflicts like the football game, or the kids soccer game, or the traveling softball team, or the weekend at the lake, or the fact I only slept 5 hours. For many Christians, all other activities have become mandatory while the worship service has became an optional afterthought.” (I Will p.29)
I kind of hate the term “Worship Service.” Service sounds like some kind of duty...an obligation.
(You remember the joke about the little boy who was standing in the entrance foyer of the Church looking at this enormous brass plaque with dozens of names etched on it...An older usher looked at the boy and said, “Those are names of individuals who died in the service.” And the little boy said, “Which one...the 1st or 2nd?”
If you remember we did an entire series called “The Well” where Jesus met a Samaritan woman....a divine appointment where Jesus reveals Himself as the Messiah to the woman with a painful past...she is amazed and the last words He spoke to her in John 4:23-24 are “An hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshippers will worship the Father in Spirit and Truth. Yes, the Father wants such people to worship Him. God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in Spirit and truth.”
It’s a powerful, powerful distraction from Jesus’ own mouth about the commitment of worship and God’s desire for it.
This worship could only take place after Jesus’ death, burial, resurrection and ascension. This worship is dependent upon our Spirit connecting with God, who is Spirit...Only possible for His “born again” children who are filled with His promised gift, the Holy Spirit.
Our text in Acts 2 makes it pretty clear that the early believers longed to be together in worship...it was anything but an obligation...or duty. It was joyous...sincere...and so powerful it affected their daily lives of worship so much it caused their numbers to grow daily...as God added their friends, family and neighbors in salvation
Family worship...corporate worship is not one good option among many others...it should be the consistent and faithful practice of every believer. It’s more important than Phase 10 family time!
“I Will” worship with other believers” is essential for believers in an “I Want” world.
You see we live in...