I’ve played the violin for about six years now. Each Sunday, I join the other members of our church’s worship committee and play whichever songs have been selected for that week. On certain songs, my Dad and I will do a duet. As he strums away on his guitar to accompany the melody that flows from my violin, I envy his ability to sing while he’s playing.
Not only is it physically difficult to sing and play the violin at the same time, but concentrating on so many things at the same time is practically impossible for me. Even if I know the song by heart, my mind is still absorbed in the tuning, fingering, bowing, tempo, ect. And so, it’s a rare occasion for me to stand with our congregation and lift my voice in praise to my Savior.
Now, I understand that I can glorify God through my violin playing – and I do my best to do that – but it’s simply not the same. With my mind so focused on the music, I can’t concentrate on the words. As I take a seat after the songs have been played, I often feel as though I’ve missed out on the worship.
Made To Magnify –
You see, as God’s creation, we are made to glorify Him. When we begin to understand the love of our God, it compels us to praise Him; His unending faithfulness presses our hearts to respond with sincere adoration. As we begin to understand our Savior, we’re amazed. The Lord knows that our amazement at His goodness will play through into our lives, affecting the way that we live each day. So, not only are we giving God the praise which He alone deserves, but we’re also increasing our testimony to the unsaved world.
Simply for Sunday? –
Often, when I’m considering the topic of worship, I turn to the Psalms. David’s writings abound with praise for our Lord. He says in Psalm 34:
I will bless the LORD at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth. My soul shall make its boast in the LORD; The humble shall hear of it and be glad. Oh, magnify the LORD with me, And let us exalt His name together.
Can we honestly say that we bless the Lord at all times? For some reason, we get this idea that worship is simply for Sunday. Or perhaps we realize that we’re free to praise God at any time of the week, but – unless we’re directly faced with the opportunity – our busy minds tend to let it slip to the background. It’s easy enough to sing along with a praise song on the radio and worship as you drive, but what about once you’ve reached your destination? Will that attitude of praise remain? When you’re met with a demanding boss, whiny kids, hectic schedules… (you fill in the blank here), will the worship continue to affect the way that you face these things?
Can we sincerely say that God’s praise shall continually be in our mouths? What about when life isn’t so easy? When we’re sick, suffering, hurt, troubled; will our mouths still proclaim His praise? Can we praise Him in the storm as well as in the calm?
Ceaseless Praise –
If the purpose of our lives on this earth is to glorify God, then shouldn’t that praise never cease? As I’m writing this post, the radio is playing this song:
My Savior My God –
…Yes, living, dying let me bring
My strength, my solace from this spring
That He who lives to be my King
Once died to be my Savior
That He would leave His place on High
And come for sinful men to die
You count it strange so once did I
Before I knew my Savior
My Savior loves, My Savior lives
My Savior’s always there for me
My God He was, My God He is, My God He’s always gonna be!
If we truly believe this, shouldn’t our hearts be continually singing? With a Savior who loves us enough to die for us, how can we keep silent? We have a God who remains forever, never dies, never changes, never leaves; this is just as true on the day when everything is falling apart as it is on the day when everything goes smoothly. So why aren’t we saying with David, “I will bless the Lord at all times…”? Our worship should not be restricted to the sanctuary. Created to glorify God, we ought to be taking advantage of every opportunity to praise Him.
So perhaps I can’t completely focus on the words while I’m playing my violin for the Sunday morning worship and I may feel as though I’m missing out, but how can I willingly live the rest of my week, missing out on the numerous opportunities to praise my Savior as well?