March 10th – How Important Is Worship ?

Church-going is not fashionable in Britain.The strange thing is everybody has a set of opinions about worship which will pour out in conversation as soon as you turn the tap. ‘You don’t have to go to church to worship you know’, and everyone seems to nod approval at that, as if it were the whole truth. ‘I can worship God in the open air on a Sunday’, say millions of folk who are never asked ‘Yes, you can – but do you?’. ‘Well, there are too many hypocrites in church’ say millions, and thereby implying ‘of whom I am not one’. ‘Thank God I’m not like some people I could mention’, is about as valid a thought as ‘I’m an atheist, thank God’. ‘Oh I’m not so positive as that’, says another, ‘I’m an agnostic’. ‘What’s an agnostic? ‘Someone who believes that nothing can be known for sure’. When asked ‘Are you sure of that?’, there is no blush to accompany the reply ‘Course I’m sure. I need proof’.
Well, for one thing, Jesus of Nazareth said that worship is for God, not for us. It’s not what God gets out of it, but what he longs to give us, when we open up, forget about ourselves, and do what all true worship is meant to do – to enthrone God. When we do, we are connected to the main supply of living, sometimes described as ‘living water’. “… but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” John 4:14
A Prayer: As a deer pants for springs of water, so my soul longs for you, O Lord.
Now read, as one psalm of three stanzas (as it is in the original), Psalms 42 and 43, each stanza ending in ‘My Saviour and my God’.

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