(photo source: allposters.com)
It was early evening, I sat at the edge of the bed to prepare for my private praise and worship, prayers and Bible reading, being conscious that there were still some activities in the room as my husband and son played. As I sat, songbook on my lap, a thought suddenly came to me, “All these things that we do in serving the Lord: offering praises, worshiping, praying unceasingly, attending worship services regularly, and for the workers of the vineyard of the Lord: praising for long hours everyday, frequent praying with fasting, visiting and praying for the sick… – when we do these things with diligent frequency, would all these be enough?”
This train of thought continued, “So I sing and I pray and then go back to the many plans and activities that take up so much of my time and energy and even my joy and delight, and that was it? Do I really think that this is all that makes up my genuine service to the Lord that is acceptable to Him and really blesses Him? Is this the kind of holy relationship that lasts through eternity?“
After this, I “saw” like on a wide screen, one who was praising but there was a vast space between him and where the Lord was and I felt in my heart that the two were unconnected. It is really hard to explain it now, but as I sat there, I prayed in my mind for the Lord to shed light on this because I couldn’t quite grasp its meaning.
As I proceeded to offer up songs of praise, I got it. His answer pushed its way to my heart in between the lyrics that I was trying to lift up to Him: hunger and delight.
Hunger and delight. These are the elements of genuine worshipful living.
The hunger for God, this unrelenting feeling of wanting to endlessly seek His face, to feel Him, His sweet, holy presence that brings palpable peace and joy that we can hold close to our bosom even during hard days. The hunger to experience Him, feel His healing touch, be enveloped in His power and light, hear His voice that soothes, and be comforted with His gentle assurance that HE IS ALWAYS THERE, loving, guiding, and delighting in us. It is like being perpetually embraced, held and kept safe in the arms of the King!
It is that hunger for Him, that wherever we are, whatever we’re doing, whoever we are with, our thoughts tend to stray towards Him, as if He is just there, standing right beside us, looking and listening. However busy our days are, sometimes spiced with chaos and confusion, there is always that yearning to run to him the moment we can free ourselves from whatever is holding us or our attention.
To run to Him and begin singing songs that are drawn from the well of our love and awe of Him. To open His Word and drink of it thirstily for it is our life!
As the deer pants for the water brooks,
So pants my soul for You, O God.
My soul thirsts for God, for the living God.
When shall I come and appear before God? (Psalm 42:1-2)
I like to compare it with a man and woman who are deeply and wildly in love. Uhmm, we’ve all been there, right? When we met that person who made our heartbeat skip and we knew for certain that he/she was to be our lifetime partner? We could hardly bear him/her to be out of our sight, and when we weren’t together, he/she occupied our thoughts! This is the fervent love we must have with our Bridegroom, a love so ablaze it lasts through eternity!
Whatever we do, whether tending to our family, serving in Church, going about our ministry like visiting the sick and the bound, sharing the Gospel to family, friends, co-workers and neighbors, or writing and speaking, we do it all to the Lord. For when we do, we do it zealously and not lukewarmly. Let Him be the consuming fire in our hearts and souls, the wind beneath our wings, the wisdom our lips speak. The inspiration and motivation in, the reason for, and purpose and life of, everything we do!
Our posturing must be that of bent-down, humble servant who eagerly announces:
I delight to do thy will, O my God…! (Psalm 40:8)