Worship with the World

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It is always amazing to me that no matter where I go in the world and gather with other believers, no matter language barriers or equipment limitations all you need to feel like family is to start worshiping the father.

I’ve been to many different nations speaking many different languages, but the moment music starts and the worship begins you sense that same familiar presence. The presence that binds us together. The Spirit of God gathering with His kids and connecting them in a common purpose to declare His goodness. Literally every time it puts me in awe of God and His family and I immediately realize how truly big our family is. When you worship this week whether in a large gathering or small group realize that all over this planet you have brothers and sisters doing the same.

You are not alone.

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BOLD: Practical Principles of Worship 2

Romans 12:1 (AMP)…on screen
 
I appeal to you therefore, brethren, and beg of you in view of all the mercies of God, to make a decisive dedication of your bodies, presenting all your members and faculties, as a living sacrifice, holy, devoted, consecrated, and well pleasing to God, which is your reasonable, rational, intelligent service and spiritual worship..
 
“A Heart of Worship
 
“Powerfully bold worship is an expression of the boldness of a surrendered heart.” 
 
  • A surrendered heart, is the difference between true worship and religious exercise
 
    • As a young man growing up in the church, I had the opportunity to see and experience this in a negative way.  sad to say its so easy to do.  We can easily go through religious exercise with truly worshiping God.  Gather for church, sing the songs, lift our hands, even jump and dance, even flow in the gifts of the spirit or appear to any way with a heart that is not truly surrendered to God.  I did this for years.  Its what we used to call playing church.  Going through the motions.
 
  • We’ve heard people say for years, coaches or teachers, “your acting like your heart is not in it”
 
  • The idea is when you’ve surrendered your heart, is when you have been given to God in a deeper way. 
 
Galatians 2:20 the apostle Paul wrote this…I am crucified with Christ yet not I but Christ lives in me, the life that I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God who loved me and gave his life for me.
 
The idea is Christ died for me, so I am going to live for him!
 
 >David obviously taught Solomon this precept, because in Proverbs Solomon wrote this…Proverbs 3:5,6
 
“Trust in the Lord with all of your heart, lean not to your own understanding, in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.
 
Worship is all about a surrendered heart.  David is the epitome of understanding what worship is all about and understand the hearts role in all this.  God described him as having a heart the beats with His own heartbeat
 
  • The wonderful thing about true worship, it enhances the intimacy we have in a relationship with Jesus
 
The heart:  is the seat of our will, emotions, thinking.   The great thing about God is he does not want to break us but nurtures and graces us so we will willfully submit to his will. 
 
The heart is the place devotion, surrender, and commitment comes from.  Worship is as much about these words as it is anything else.  The activity of worship is that much more meaningful, when our absolute motive of life is to devote, surrender, and commit ourselves to the king and his kingdom.
 
In the bible when we see the word heart, it is a reference to the will, emotion, desire, thoughts, and life of a person.  Physically, spiritually, emotionally, mentally.
 
This is why the greatest commandment is to Love the lord your God with all your HEART, SOUL, MIND, and STRENGTH. God is telling us love God with your whole life. Our whole selves.
 
BOLD worship starts in the heart and proceeds through our lives.  The best example I could give you of this is King David.  He was Bold especially in worship.  the expressions of worship flowed from him with ease, because his heart was so given to God.
 
1 Samual 16:7  
 
God doesn’t see they way man sees, man looks on the outward appearance of a man, but God looks on the HEART.
 
>The apostle Paul in the book of acts described King David as a man after Gods own heart.  the message bible says it this way.  That David’s heart, beat with Gods heart beat.
 
>Meaning what was important to God was important to David, what moved Gods heart, moved David’s heart, what broke Gods heart, broke David’s heart. 
 
David BOLDY gave his whole life to Father God for his use and purpose.
 
You can see it…
 
  • as a shepherd on the pasture, guarding, protecting, loving the sheep
 
  • as a bold young man who was moved to fight Goliath, because of his outlandish Gaul in Taking Gods name in vain.  You could see it is his BOLD response of Faith against the giant and in defiance of the fear of his own brothers and the entire Israelite army including King Saul
 
  • in his submission to Saul, even when Saul hated him and tried to kill him.  His heart was to honor God and honor the king.
 
  • As he became King at 38 years of age after waiting for over a decade for the purpose of God to be fulfilled in his life.  His desire was to reestablish zion, the city of God Jerusalem, It was his bold declaration as he worshipped in front of the ark of the covenant as the presence of God was brought back into the Great city of our Great King.
 
  • You can see it in David’s desire to build God a house, no one had ever up to that point on their own thought of God in that way.  Meaning, its not right that we have built homes for ourselves but we have not taken the time to build a house for God.
 
  • You can see it in his rule as king, the tenderness of his heart, the strength of his heart, the worship of his heart
 
  • Even in his failures, you can see it, as he realizes his treachery, he realizes the devilish the way he has handled himself and how he found his heart growing cold, lost his purpose, and begin to act out of selfish desire and ruthless self centeredness.  When he came to himself at the prophetic confrontation of Nathan, he immediately without hesitation became repentant, and his heart broke, and he turned his face to God and ask for mercy, and rededicated his heart, his house, his life to His King.
 
  • In his death, as he had created all the plans for the house of God, had prepared all the money and supplies for the house of God to be built and on his death bed explained to his son Solomon how to be a king, his heart reflected the heart of God.
 
So what does Bold look like?
 
1.  Bold worship is tender heart.  A heart that is soft and pliable before God.
 
2.  Bold worship is surrendered heart.  A heart that is unreservedly given to God
 
3.  Bold worship is Caring heart.  A heart that protects, loves and is compassionate.  breaks for what Gods heart breaks for.
 
4.  Bold worship is a submitted heart.  A heart that says God not my will but your will be done.
 
5.  Bold worship is Changed heart.  Not perfect but not pretentious.  Its authentic, honest and real.
 
6.  Bold worship is a Courageous heart.  A heart that stands in the face of pressure and challenge and says I will worship God anyway, and I will win this battle not for me, but for the sake of the Glory of God.
 
7.  Bold worship is an honoring heart.  A heart given to think, act, love and lead with the heart of God.
 
8.  Bold worship is a loving heart:  A heart that puts God first, others second, and self last.  A heart that loves God and His house.  a heart that says, Jesus died for me, I will live for him.  A heart that says, I will not build my own until I have built Gods.
 
9.  Bold worship is a full heart.  A heart filled with purpose, destiny, joy, and peace.
 
Take away:  I hope that you are taking away from this series the realities of worship.  That it is much broader, deeper and wider than the mere expressions of it. 
 
This week, take time each day, when you get up in the morning, just fifteen minutes, and surrender yourself to God, just say God I was made to worship you, you have saved me, and first and foremost I want my life to be given to you.  before I have had a chance to let the day carry me away in its business, I give myself my family my everything in surrender to you.  Use my life today to reflect your glory. 
 
Just take fifteen minutes and do this, sit in his presence and truly worship him, and let him prepare your heart for what he would have it to be.
 
 

Break the Bottle

Romans 12:1 (AMP)

1I APPEAL to you therefore, brethren, and beg of you in view of [all] the mercies of God, to make a decisive dedication of your bodies [presenting all your members and faculties] as a living sacrifice, holy (devoted, consecrated) and well pleasing to God, which is your reasonable (rational, intelligent) service and spiritual worship.

Definition of worship:

reverence honor and homage paid to God
formal or ceremonious rendering of such honor and homage to God

Break the Bottle.

Mark 14:3-9 (NKJ)
3 And being in Bethany at the house of Simon the leper, as He sat at the table, a woman came having an alabaster flask of very costly oil of spikenard. Then she broke the flask and poured it on His head. 4 But there were some who were indignant among themselves, and said, “Why was this fragrant oil wasted? 5 For it might have been sold for more than three hundred denarii and given to the poor.” And they criticized her sharply.

1. A woman boldly Came.

Praise and worship is something we do on purpose. It’s a choice we make, a decision that we come to. Its not a feeling, its not a gathering, its not a night, it’s a decision.
When David Brought the ark back into Jerusalem he decided to worship radically.
When Miriam arrived on the other side of the red sea, she decided to take a moment and worship him.

When this woman who had so much sin, who had been delivered from so much pain, basically couldn’t take it any more and decided to worship Him.

When The children of Israel walked around the walls of Jericho, they were instructed but had to make a decision they would do it.

2. Have an alabaster flask of Very Costly Perfume…And she Boldly Broke it.

Worship is a “using what you have” experience
Worship is a “giving it all” experience
Worship is a “sacrificial” experience
Worship is a bold experience

I Chronicles 21;24

Then King David said to Ornan, “No, but I will surely buy it for the full price, for I will not take what is yours for the LORD, nor offer burnt offerings with that which costs me nothing.”

3. Some people don’t like boldness.

Some times people don’t understand why we worship the way we do. They don’t
Get the faith in it, or the celebration of it. It makes them uncomfortable. They’re not
uncomfortable seeing this kind of behavior in other areas but for some reason
When it comes to praise and worship they just can’t take it, it offends their pride.
It offends their religious thinking.

They said this is too much, we could have given that to the poor, too much?….to much for the king of Kings, too much for the Creator of all?….too much for our savior?….no its never too much.

David’s wife Michael mocked him, david continued to worship with complete surrender

The People of Jericho mocked Israel, and the walls fell

Regardless if people understand it, regardless if people are to religious for it, regardless if peoples pride hinders them, Our King, our savior is deserving of our praise and worship….we must give it to him.

4. What she does is good.

God created us to worship Him…..Everything created was created to worship its Creator. Jesus said even the rocks will cry out…revelations 4 says we were created to worship him.

5. Our praise and worship is our breakthrough….its the fragrance of our lives

When we praise and worship God in advance of our solution we are doing it in faith. It is like a sweet smelling savor to God, and brings unbelievable results in our lives.

Paul and silas after being beaten, prayed and sang praises to God and their chains fell off, and the chains of those around them fell off.

6. How do we praise and worship God

Don’t misinterpret our worship for the expressions of it. Worship is the embodiment of bringing glory and reverence to God, based on who He is. The expressions of that worship are many.

Singing,
Playing instruments
lifting hands,
Dancing
giving
Shouting
on and on the biblical methods of the expression of worship go…

but worship is our everyday being the believer, the Christian, the church God has called us to be, paying homage to God and bringing glory to His name.

No more talk of how bad it is, and who doesn’t care, and what are they going to do about it, lets let the fruit of our lips be praise to God.

Every time its hard…Break the bottle,
every time we get a bad report, Break the bottle,
every time our family doesn’t act right…break the bottle
every time we are facing a challenge….break the bottle
instead of complaints….break the bottle and let the fragrent smell of our worship go up before God and see what happens.

When we break the bottle we are fully pouring our lives out on Christ and saying Jesus you are Lord, and I reserve nothing of myself for myself, but I give it all to you.

If you sow you will reap

Years ago, Jesus impressed on my heart that if I would minister to other peoples kids He would always surround my kids with strong voices speaking into their lives. He has done just that. Along with Janae and I and many others have mentored, encouraged, and taught Taylor. She has grown and developed and tonight she helped lead worship at youth america. God is using her, and I believe it is only the beginning. Thanks Chandler and Natalie Boyce, and grant and Monica Pankratz for leading and giving her opportunity.

Never underestimate the power of caring for others and raising your kids in the church.

We are here safe and sound

sorry it has taken a minute to get this post up, but this is the first time I have gotten to a place to get on the web.  There will be pictures on the next post, later today.

We are having a great time, everyone is doing well and feeling great, we started with a bang last night.  We invited leaders from the next generation from two colleges here in Kigali and had around 280 show up.  We packed the church building out and the worship team really were anointed, its an amazing thing to worship with Christians around the world and realize they serve Jesus just like we do.  The whole team expressed what a great moment it was.  I spoke to them about healthy leaders being dreamers.  It was a great night and a great response.

The team is out today, one group is painting school rooms for the local church here who also runs a school, one of the best in the nation.  This will help them move forward in development and accreditation.  The worship team is practicing and setting up to do a high school assembly this evening, and the other team went to an elementary school in an impoverished area and gave them shoes.

God is doing great things in and through the team.

thanks for all your prayers and support, not only for us on this short term team, but for the ministries here long term likc Christ Church Rwanda, and Rwanda Outreach.

More to come…

Worship is Universal

One of my favorite things is to worship in different cultures. It’s amazing to me how you can be in OKC, Oklahoma, or Rwanda, Africa, or Uganda, or Cambodia or anywhere around the world, and you can find Christians gathering and worshipping. There is nothing like it. The first time i ever experienced it over seas, i just stood there and cried, because it became so real to me that people are serving and worship Jesus everywhere, and its in that worship experience that you truly connect as family. You realize these are my brothers and sisters, this is our Family, Jesus is our brother and God is our Father and we are one! That is the power of Unity, its the power of Family, its the power of the Local church, its the power of Christianity. The worship experience is one of the most compelling experiences in humanity, never be afraid to bring your friends or acquaintances or even strangers into your worship experience, there is something about it that supersedes mere human inhibitions, its a true picture of Gods people lifting up their creator, their savior, their king. Here is a small sampling of our team worshipping with the orphans in the Hope center in Kampong Thom Cambodia. Pastor Sochan, runs several kids programs, where he teaches them english, bible, and worship, and he feeds them, over 500 a week. Sounds like God to me.