Today is a day for passion.
The scripture tells us to gather all our inner feelings and concentrate them on actions that express love for the Lord. There is no reason to hold back, to keep a measure of our love in reserve. In a worship service, when the moment comes to praise, we must release the joy pent up in our hearts. Our opening acts of praise in a worship service must be full-throated, hot-hearted, and mentally captivating. No less praise will do.
Why? The measure of our praise is not that of our passion for God, or our knowledge of God, or even our faith in God. The standard we are given in the Scriptures has nothing to do with our feelings, our knowledge, or even with the level of our faith. The standard, the measuring rod is this: “the glory due unto His name.” (Ps 29:1-2)
All other measures are changeable
- as passions heat and cool,
- knowledge is gained and forgotten, and
- faith swells and shrinks in our hearts.
His worthiness goes on and on and on and on forever.
Our praise is a matter of justice—the praise due unto His name!
He is worthy of nothing less than our very best praise—our best music, our finest words, our most sincere gratitude and our most humble hearts. Any part of our mind held back for lesser considerations is a sacrilege, a selfish, careless oversight to be corrected at once as we marshal all our mental resources to consider and express the wonders of Who God is.
When another Sunday comes and you join the Saints of God in the House of God and the call to worship sounds, lift your eyes beyond the music and the lights, the singers and players of music and their leaders, and tune your heart to heaven’s songs. Some of them are recorded for us in the Bible. Others are works of the Spirit through His troubadours.
The Spirit speaks through songs in every generation.
Surrender to the spirit of the song and join the songs of angels, thousands of them in joyful assembly. You will also be singing with loved ones who have gone before you, gathered as a special choir of the redeemed in a gallery made just for them. You will take your seat with them someday and today you may add your voice to theirs in worship.
Lord, send a heavenly fire to ignite a passion for You in each of our hearts today!
Psalm 29:1-2 NKJV
Give unto the LORD, O you mighty ones, Give unto the LORD glory and strength. Give unto the LORD the glory due to His name; Worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness.
Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.
Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’
You are God
From the Book of Common Prayer (adapted SRP)
You are God: we praise You; You are the Lord; we acclaim You; You are the eternal Father: All creation worships You. To You all angels, all the powers of heaven, Cherubim and Seraphim, sing in endless praise: Holy, holy, holy Lord, God of power and might, heaven and earth are full of Your glory. The glorious company of apostles praises You. The noble fellowship of prophets praises You. The white‑robed army of martyrs praises You. Throughout the world the holy Church acclaims you; Father, of majesty unbounded, Your true and only Son, worthy of all worship, and the Holy Spirit, advocate and guide. You, Christ, are the King of glory, the eternal Son of the Father. When You became man to set us free You did not shun the Virgin’s womb. You overcame the sting of death and opened the kingdom of heaven to all believers. You are seated at God’s right hand in glory. We believe that you will come and be our judge. Come then, Lord, and help Your people, bought with the price of Your own blood, and bring us with Your saints to glory everlasting. Amen.
I Love You, Lord
Words and Music: Laurie Klein
I love You, Lord, and I lift my voice
To worship You, O my soul, rejoice!
Take joy, my King, in what You hear;
May it be a sweet, sweet sound in Your ear.
© 2017 Stephen R. Phifer All Rights Reserved