T. E. Lawrence was a British archaeologist, army officer, diplomat, author and great friend of the Arabs. In fact, he is most well known as Lawrence of Arabia. (You may be familiar with the epic movie based on his life.)
When Lawrence was in Paris after WWI with some of his Arab friends, he showed them the sights of the city. His friends showed little interest in the Louvre, the Arch of Triumph, or Napoleon’s tomb.
What impressed them the most? It was the faucets in their hotel bathroom. They spent much of their time turning the faucets on and off. These men of the desert were amazed that they could get all the water they wanted with just the turn of a knob.
As they were preparing to leave the hotel and return home, Lawrence found them in the bathroom with wrenches, trying to disconnect the faucets. They thought, if they took the faucets home with them, they would have all the water they wanted. Lawrence had to explain to them that the effectiveness of the faucet depended on the water system to which it was attached.
A study of worship reminds us that the effectiveness of all that we do in the church is not to be found in outward activity, but in the One who stands behind it. The 'faucet' merely gives us access to the vast water supply.
Jesus declared in John 4 that the Father is searching for those who will worship Him in spirit and truth. I can never get over the fact that we – you and I – can be the answer to the Father’s search.
May we have hearts that are filled to overflowing with worship for Him. Let us continually enter His presence with praise (Psalm 100). Let us continually offer up to Him the sacrifice of praise (Hebrews 13:15). Let us at all times enthrone Him on our praises (Psalm 22:3). He is great and greatly to be praised (Psalm 48:1)!
How do we praise the Lord? Yes, through song. Music is a powerful avenue to express our praise. But it is not the only one. We can also praise the Lord in our prayers to Him, our ministry to one another, the giving of our finances (tithes, missions, offerings), as well as the study, teaching and preaching of the Word.
Worship is an individual experience. We must make the choice every day and throughout the day to individually give praise to His name. Worship is also a corporate or group experience. There are times we are to join together in worship. The worship we give to Him is amplified by our unity. Please do not miss out on this essential aspect of worship.
It is imperative we understand that worship is not primarily for our own benefit. Are there benefits for us when we worship? Yes, many! We experience the Lord’s presence. We are encouraged and refreshed. Our faith is strengthened, and more.
But the prime focus must be on the Lord. When we join together in worship, the question must not be, “Did I enjoy it? Did I like the music and the words?” The question must be, “Lord, did You enjoy it? Were you blessed? Were You lifted up? Were You enthroned on our praises?” May the answer from heaven be a resounding Yes!
This Sunday, March 20, we will continue our teaching series, “Markers along the Discipleship Pathway”, by focusing on the beauty and worth of Worship. Please join us at 10:35am in the building or online for the Live broadcast on either Facebook (Honolulu AG) or our YouTube channel (Honolulu Assembly of God). We Livestream to both locations every Sunday.
Coming Up: The 57th Hawaii AG District Conference will take place March 28-30 at First Assembly (Red Hill). Special speakers are Dr. Joseph Castleberry, President of Northwest University, and Pastor Rob Ketterling, founder of River Valley Church in Minnesota. Evening services begin at 6:30pm and are open to the public.
Aloha ke Akua!