The Problem With Worship

Problem with worshipEvery week millions of people attend a faith gathering of some kind. We get up early, get ourselves and our families together and try to get to our church on time for worship. Usually, it’s a day like any other day. Just another part of our weekly routine. That’s the problem. For most, it’s just another part of our routine. We tell ourselves,

“It’s Sunday, (or whatever day your church gathers) it’s time to go to worship.”

That doesn’t sound bad right?! What’s wrong with going to worship? The problem is that word…..”worship”.  Are you thinking of “worship” as a noun or a verb? Is “worship” the place you go or is it what you DO at that place?

I’ve heard it a billion times, “I’m not being fed.” ” I didn’t get anything out of worship today.” “That just didn’t do anything for me.”

That’s what you say when worship is just a place you go. A place you go expecting to get something in return for your presence. What if we thought of it differently? What if instead of “the place you go expecting something for your presence” you went to a place expecting the presence? The presence of God’s spirit flowing throughout the room. Now we are not going to worship, we are going TO worship. Do you hear the difference?

It’s not entirely your fault if you’ve thought of worship as a noun. That’s the state of our hyper-consumer culture. We pay for entertainment and good food. We pay for a good time. It’s hard to shut that mentality off when you walk into a space that is intended for you to give instead of receive. When you see a band on stage and the music isn’t up to par, you feel like you’ve been let down. When the message doesn’t make you cry or feel some sort of extreme emotion, you feel like you weren’t fed. In reality, the music and the message are not meant to make you “feel” a certain way, it’s intended to call your attention to the purpose of our gathering…..Jesus. When your attention is focused on Him, we learn how He wants us to live our lives and learn about His unwavering love for us.

Worship is a place you go expecting to GIVE, not receive. What are you giving in worship? Do you come to worship expecting to see Jesus or do you just expect Jesus to see you?

It shouldn’t be the music or the message that brings you to your knees. It should be the recognition of who Jesus is and what He has done for you in love.

Our mission statement as a worship team at Wesley Chapel is “To lead people into a passionate encounter with Christ.”

It’s not, “to play the most popular music” or ” to impress people with our incredible gifts.” or even “make the congregation feel good.”

We seek, as a team, to worship in such a way that causes people to forget that we are on stage and to see Jesus.

When your church gathers this week, don’t just go to worship…..go TO worship.

Let me know what you think about worship by replying in the comments section. Peace!

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10 thoughts on “The Problem With Worship

  1. I totally agree and have been saying so for a few years now However, going TO worship, makes me think of the place (noun). While going to WORSHIP, makes me think of what I am getting ready to do (verb). But that is just semantics, as we are both on the same page with what “going to worship” means.

    I think it also comes up when people are looking for a church home. Too many times, they look for the place with the best preaching or best music, instead of where God wants them to SERVE.

    Sunday worship service should be just that – worship. We should worship our creator throughout the whole service – as we sing, as we hear and participate in scripture reading, as we participate in corporate prayer, as we listen to God through the message, as we rejoice in baptisms, as we partake of communion and even as we give of our tithes and offerings (God loves a cheerful giver). All are opportunities to worship and give to God our praise and thanksgiving.

    In deed, the Sunday morning worhip service is a time to give, not to get (or be fed). Of course God will still bless us even when we are worshiping (giving), so we end of receiving too. Although, our intention (mindset) should be to give, not receive, during worship time. The time to be fed is in Sunday morning Sunday school, Wednesday evening classes or other fellowship/bible study opportunites (and there are plenty).

    I am very thankful to be a part of the worship team and find myself worshiping, rather I am on the stage or in the AV booth, just as I would in a pew.

    Keep up the good job – Brian!

    • Thanks Eric! I think of worship kind of in the same way as when we give our tithes and offerings. We GIVE and God in return blesses us beyond measure. Thanks for all you do Eric!

  2. Worship is an action verb, we are to be spiritually,emotionally and physically engaged in the action or worship. Listen to an African choir and you will hear and feel the action in worship
    Dan Johnson

    • Dan you are right! Worship in Africa is DEFINITELY a verb! They also are not in hurry to get out of worship either! They will worship for hours! I wish we had that much passion in the U.S.

  3. Once people see worship as a verb it is no longer confined to a particular building, place, day, time of day. It becomes anytime & anywhere and more focused and very personal. Good post…

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