A Blog by Jennifer Aulthouse


A heart for those who want more of God. A desperate plea for those who don't.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Worship

I have the amazing ability to take something that is absolutely beautiful and poke holes in it by pointing out how it just didn’t quite perfectly meet up to my expectations, thus denigrating its potential impact in my life....or even worse, in another’s life, when I choose to open my trap and expound on such disappointments, in all my blowharded insightfulness.

Sometimes the beautiful thing I poke holes in is a person, which never fails to present airtight evidence that I can be a marvelous Pharisee when left spiritually unchecked. I detest my idealism and its specificity at times. And yet, underneath this, in its purest form, God created me to be a visionary, and in order to be a fruitful one, I must carry the picture of perfection that He places in me. I long for the day of maturity to come when this gift is only used in life-giving ways.....that is, when I can perfectly interpret what perfection really means to Him.

I went to a concert on Saturday night, a concert that the particular friend I went with and I have been planning to attend for a few years now, and I carried in my expectations of what I wanted out of this concert and how I wanted to grow. But I almost missed the beautiful message God had for me. I’d been longing for a night being swept away in worship-filled music so I could just unleash what feels like has been held back and make the words my own.

It didn’t go that way. There was some of this, yes, and it was pure and inspiring, but the majority of the songs that night were focused on us as God’s children and the power of grace and healing in our lives, freeing us to serve Him, as opposed to praise-filled melodies devoted to God for who He is. It wasn’t initially what I wanted.

But it was exactly what I needed.

I’m in a place where God has shown me a path I’m to take. He’s given me a mission and a message and the gifts to carry them out, and what I needed was to witness someone else – in this case, the band - doing just that with their own lives. I saw these blessed, chosen, gifted musicians doing exactly what they were created to do, presenting the message placed in them to give, and absolutely free to express their creativity in doing so because they know who they each are in Christ, and that all they have flows through Him. Idea after idea poured into my heart of things I wanted to do in service and ways I could draw closer to God just by accepting the freedom to creatively worship with my life. For me, that means releasing my fear that all the deficiencies I see in my character and abilities will always be obstacles too great to bear any real fruit.

Worship is deeper than sitting in church with others at a prescribed time. Being together in this way is a crucial element in a life of worship because of the strength, connection, and even correction we are designed to need from each other, but worship itself is about having a focused, longing, broken, devoted heart before God. Whenever and wherever my heart is in line with God’s, and I wouldn’t have it any other way no matter what it costs me, I am worshipping Him.

As the night went on and the band’s glorious message seeped into my spirit, the realization hit me that God was using this time to reach me yet again, preparing me to continue forward in where He’s leading me, assuring me that He will work within my weakness and all my awkwardness, and isn’t surprised by the forgiven sin I’ve come to hate in my life. Whatever crustiness had built up lately was gently scraped off.

How perfectly He knows me.

It all sank in, and I found myself falling into my most natural stance when before Him in corporate worship. I simply fold my hands, lift my face, sometimes singing and sometimes not. I felt my spirit find His, my heart align with His for whatever He wants, and then return to the music, each word becoming part of my own story.

I am free to live alive in Christ.

Worship indeed.


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