It is ok to worship during the good times. During the times where things are all right with the world, it is ok to declare to the Lord, “Yes, Lord, we praise Your name because we are in a place to do that”. Well we don’t really say that, but that is what we mean. And when things are difficult and tough… well, let’s just say that as much as we want to convince ourselves and others that we declare God’s faithfulness in all times, we, just like any other human being on the planet, are always prone to declare otherwise. Because the matter of the fact is- it is hard to worship God during the good times. It is hard. And difficult, and uncertain. If it was easy, if worship was easy, then we wouldn’t have to always ask God for strength and wisdom, confidence and courage, determination and perseverance during the times we need them the most. Worshipping our Father in heaven takes on a whole new different meaning when we realise that worshipping is for both the moments of our lives when life is good and the moments in which life isn’t as endearing.
What happens when we can’t seem to worship and sing the songs when we’re in the pit? When we are down in the depths of despair, what do we think of God then? Do we still believe that He is who He says He is and always has been- kind, loving, comforting, just, fair and true? How we still express our love for Jesus even if the world is still crumbling around us? What if we experience some sort of ‘Job’ situation, would we still believe that God is all-almighty and all-sovereign, even in that particular moment we may find it hard to believe it to be true? These are all valid questions, and such that may not necessarily have a nice, neat answer all tied up in a bow.
Worship is so much more than saying the words. It is more than just on a Sunday, where people gather together and sing songs and listen to the pastor speak about a passage and how it applies to everyday life. Worship is all-encompassing, a lifestyle rather than just one day a week, a notion that many, many people seemingly believe, even if it is not their intention to believe that. Worship is far beyond we perceive to think it could be, and more than we can ever want it to be. To be in a constant state of worship, to worship truly even in the moments of doubt, is to declare that yes, we don’t have all the answers, that yes, we may be in pits of despair, but we will trust our Lord and Saviour with the outcome. We will trust, that whatever God is working through our pain, hurt and suffering, will amount to so much more than we can fathom, that the rewards will far outweigh whatever we have experienced til that moment.
There is a song lately that I’ve been listening to that has reminded me of what it really means to worship without inhibition. “Soar” by Meredith Andrews is from her album Deeper which releases February 19th, an album that I myself am very excited for. In it, worship leader Meredith encourages us to fix our eyes on Christ, that when we’re struggling to find the words to say, be it a declaratory statement of faith or our frustrations, we need to remember what He has spoken over us before the beginning of time, that whatever we’re going through is not a determinant in the full knowledge of who we are in Christ. As we dwell upon the fact that God has our best interests at heart, we can ‘…run and not grow weary…walk and not be faint, rise up on wings like eagles to soar…’
Soaring on wings like eagles doesn’t happen overnight, nor does singing passionately and declaring our state of worship in the valley, yet it is an outpouring and an outward expression of our own beliefs about what worship is to us. Worshipping during the good times is easy, yet sometimes what is needed for us to grow in our faith is the difficult times, as we ask ourselves- do we still believe what we have believed when life was good? Am I still going to worship, even when I may not ‘feel’ it? Worshipping when things are difficult takes great character, something that we may have to ask God for, if we are to praise the Lord when the world is upside down for us. Something to think about as the week continues to roll on.
Before I end this post, let me post a few questions. Have you ever been in Job-like situations recently? What has God taught you about Himself and yourself during that period? Have you found it difficult to praise God when times are difficult? Is there a time when you have often wondered what it would’ve been like if you didn’t praise God in that moment- where would you be right now? Let us all know in the comments, and remember, that worship is much more than what we do on a routinely basis. Worship is how we live in our day-to-day lives, so let’s make it all count so that when people look at us, they’ll see Christ in us as we seek to embody Him in every moment that we live from here on out til the end!