5 Habits - Worship #4

Welcome to Everyday Devotions. These daily Bible readings and Prayer Pathways are designed to help you go deeper with God each day in response to what you are hearing at the Everyday Church services and Life Group gatherings.

Thursday 23rd January

In this week’s Everyday Devotions, we are looking at the third habit of a healthy Christian – spending time worshipping God on our own and embracing singing as a means of deepening our friendship with God.

Bible Meditation

Psalm 100:1-2

1 Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth.
2  Worship the Lord with gladness; come before him with joyful songs.

Psalm 92:1-4

1 It is good to praise the Lord and make music to your name, O Most High,
2 proclaiming your love in the morning and your faithfulness at night,
3 to the music of the ten-stringed lyre and the melody of the harp.
4 For you make me glad by your deeds, Lord; I sing for joy at what your hands have done.

1) How important do you think it is to worship God joyfully each day? Why do you think that the writers of both these psalms particularly emphasise the importance of ‘joyful songs’ and of ‘singing for joy’ ?

2) What does this mean for us on days when we don’t feel very joyful? We will look tomorrow at how to worship God in the midst of grief and trouble, but today try to articulate what you think. How can we sing for joy when we don’t feel very joyful?

The eighteenth century preacher Jonathan Edwards argued that “God is glorified not only by His glory’s being seen, but by its being rejoiced in. When those that see it delight in it, God is more glorified than if they only see it. His glory is then received by the whole soul, both by the understanding and by the heart … He that testifies his idea of God’s glory [doesn’t] glorify God so much as he that testifies also his … delight in it.”
John Piper agrees with him, arguing that “God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in Him … The essence of worship is delight in God, which displays His all-satisfying value.” He adds that “It is necessary to define worship not simply as a way of reflecting back to God the radiance of His worth, but, more precisely, as a way of doing it gladly. In all forms of worship, it is important to fight against the tendency to relegate it to a simple duty, and to pray that God would grant the deepest sense of delight. A fundamental aspect of private worship is the delighting of oneself in the Lord: ‘Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart’ (Psalm 37:4). Fight for joy in God, that your worship may be complete.”

3) Do you agree with Jonathan Edwards and John Piper? Rather than simply nodding or shaking your head, take the time to write down clearly why you agree or disagree. What do you think God is trying to say to you today?

Philippians 4:4

"Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!"

Isaiah 61:10

“I delight greatly in the Lord; my soul rejoices in my God. For he has clothed me with garments of salvation and arrayed me in a robe of his righteousness, as a bridegroom adorns his head like a priest, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.”

Psalm 90:14

“Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love, that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days.”

4) How can the apostle Paul command us to be joyful in God always? Isn’t this unreasonable?

5) What was it that Isaiah saw that enabled him to rejoice in the Lord, even in the toughest of times?

6) How is the prayer of Moses, who wrote Psalm 90, helpful to us today? What did he pray when he felt dissatisfied with life and dejected in his heart?

Prayer Pathway

So let’s use The Moses Prayer that we learned together last week as our prayer pathway today. Use each of the items that Moses passed on his way into the Holy of Holies in the Tabernacle as a fuel to rejoice in God’s love for us:

COURTYARD WALLS: Begin by confessing God’s greatness and total otherness. Worship him in his holiness, then rejoice that he still invites you to come near.

BRONZE ALTAR: Confess your specific sins to God, thanking him that you are declared totally righteous by grace through the once-for-all blood sacrifice of Jesus.

BRONZE LAVER: Ask God to wash you and change you, filling you with the water of his Holy Spirit and yielding the fruit of the Spirit in your heart – the character described in Galatians 5:22-24.

TABLE AND LAMPSTAND: Thank God for his Word and for his Spirit. Pledge that you will live by both of them today, obeying God’s Word even when you disagree with it and following the Spirit’s promptings even when you are scared by them.

ALTAR OF INCENSE: Spend time worshipping God and bringing specific prayer requests to him for your friends, for your family, for your church and for your nation. Make big requests that are worthy of such a great God.

THE ARK OF GOD’S PRESENCE: End by enjoying the presence of God. Don’t rush away. Ask God to fill you with his Holy Spirit and spend time resting in his presence before you carry on with the rest of your day.

End with Worship

In order to help you to respond to God in sung worship, we have created two playlists for you on Spotify.

The Everyday Devotions playlist contains a handful of songs which are particularly relevant to our Everyday Devotions this week. This song list changes each week along with our devotions.

The Everyday Church Song List playlist contains most of the songs that we are singing right now across the venues of Everyday Church. This is a wider song list for you to play throughout the day to help you worship as you wash up, as you drive, as you shower, as you sit on the bus and as you go about your daily life in  other ways.

If you are somewhere where you can sing loudly, why not use these two playlists to end by singing some songs of worship to the Lord? If you are on the bus or train, why not put on your headphones and sing in your heart to God instead?
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Connect: We’d really like your feedback on how these Everyday Devotions are helping you and how we might help you even better. Talk to us by emailing: devotions@everyday.org.uk
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These Everyday Devotions have been produced and edited by Phil and Ruth Moore on behalf of the Everyday Church Elders

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