I was excited for our team to minister at the special needs orphanage in Guatemala. But since I don’t have much experience working with disabled children, I didn’t know what to expect. Nothing could prepare me for what I saw.
As I rounded the corner into the main room, sitting in a circle were about ten children and a handful of caregivers. One boy was playing a drum while the others were clapping and singing. So intent were they in what they were doing they barely looked up to notice my team of thirteen people.
Since I don’t speak Spanish (unless I’m ordering at Alberto’s), I asked our translator what they were singing. She said, “they are singing worship songs.”
I just stood there stunned. It was like I couldn’t move. All I could do was just watch them as they worshiped.
There were no stage lights. No background tracks. No trendy outfits. No views on social media. No amazing vocalist with side mic singers. No album cover… Only one little drummer.
It was one of the most beautiful things I have ever seen. It was there the Lord reminded me of the scriptures that say, “From the lips of children and infants you, Lord, have called forth your praise.” (Matthew 21:16)
And there it was. In that little orphanage in the middle of nowhere Guatemala, those words were a reality.
I was convicted for how many times I’ve made worship about my preferences and priorities instead of about Jesus. Maybe you’ve been guilty of that too.
If so, like me, you need a worship shift in your life. Here’s how:
Make worship about God, not about you.
The moment you start thinking about yourself in worship is the moment it stops becoming about God. The Bible tells us to “ascribe to the Lord, all you families of nations, ascribe to the Lord glory and strength.” (Psalm 96:7)
Worship is not for you. It’s for God. As you focus your worship upward toward him, he changes you on the inside.
Make worship about God, not what other people might think.
I’ve had people tell me they don’t like to sing out loud because other people might hear them. Isn’t it better that other people listen to you praise God instead of God never hearing you?
The Bible tells us that “through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise—the fruit of lips that openly profess his name.” (Hebrews 13:15)
Those precious children in the orphanage did not care one bit what other people thought. They just worshiped. We have much to learn from them.
Make worship about God, not the world.
Worship has more to do with the supernatural than the natural. We often reverse the two.
Jesus said, “The time is coming—indeed it’s here now—when true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth. The Father is looking for those who will worship him that way. For God is Spirit, so those who worship him must worship in spirit and in truth.” (John 4:23-24)
The moment you start viewing worship as routine is when it stops being what it’s meant to be. A spiritual act in which you give God all the glory due his name.
Make worship about God, not your comfort.
I get it. We all have different musical styles and preferences. And I’ve heard ALL the excuses.
The music is too loud. The music is too quiet. The songs are too contemporary. We don’t sing enough hymns. I don’t like the way the musicians look. The excuses just keep coming.
It’s time we stopped looking at worship as a performance and instead looked at it as an intimate time with God. Do I believe we should have a worship service of the highest quality possible? Yes!
But most churches, including mine, are working with volunteers who just have a heart to worship. You should have that same heart.
Take a good hard look at your worship. And take the necessary steps to make it more about Jesus and less about you. You’ll get more when you give more.