As we continue this series, How to Spell Worship With Your Family, let’s take a closer look at how worship is closely connected to service, missions, and helping others. Worship is both the root and the fruit of service and missions. When we help and serve others, it should come out of a heart seeking to bring praise and pleasure to the Father. Once again, let’s break this down into 3 simple segments to easily teach our hearts and our families that powerful worship can happen when we help through giving, going, and serving.
1. WE WORSHIP BY GIVING.
In scripture, we see a person’s heart for giving is closely connected with their heart for worship. Jesus’ words in Matthew 6:19 -21 resonates with this truth when He compels us, “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” (NIV). Generosity feeds our soul with perspective and continually cleanses ourselves of greed and materialism.
Although we are commanded to give to the Lord a tithe of our income (Lev 27:30, Prov 3:9), this is just the first step to being a generous person. In Hudson Taylor’s autobiography, he explains the importance of persistently purging oneself, and the power of the Church giving together. “I believe we are all in danger of accumulation – it may be from thoughtlessness, or from pressure of occupation-things which would be useful to others, while not needed by ourselves, and the retention of which entails loss of blessing. If the whole resources of the Church of God were well utilized, how much more might be accomplished! How many poor might be fed, and naked clothed, and to how many of those as yet unreached the Gospel might be carried!”
When we give of our time, resources, and attention, we also give an offering to the ultimate Giver. Remember, God doesn’t want generosity from you, He wants generosity for you.
2. WE WORSHIP BY GOING.
Worship is also accomplished when we get out of our personal sphere and go into all the world sharing the good news of Jesus. Missions have always been a product of worship, and worship has always been an outcome of missions. When a person truly experiences who God is, they must not keep it to themselves. Moses heard the voice of God and went back to Egypt in Exodus 3. Isaiah saw the Lord high and lifted up and was compelled to respond with “Here am I Lord, send me” in Isaiah 6. Jesus met with the Samaritan women at the well in John 4, and the story ends with her going into the town witnessing about the man who told her everything she ever did. Paul saw Jesus on the road to Damascus in Acts 9 and became arguably the greatest evangelist the world has ever seen.
Robert Webber once wrote, “We must always remember that worship has a horizontal as well as a vertical dimension. It is important for us to enact the work of Christ as an offering of praise and thanksgiving to the Father. But it is equally important that we act on what we have enacted…The true worship of God inevitably leads the people of God into positive social action. Our calling is to worship God not only with our lips, but with our lives.”
While worship can be expressed within the walls of the church, active worship is most powerfully addressed when the church goes out to help and witness to the city, nation, and utter most parts of the world.
3. WE WORSHIP BY SERVING.
The third way we can help and grow our worship is by serving our brothers and sisters in Christ. We show our love for Christ when we display His love through serving our family and our church. In his book, Real Worship, Warren Wiersbe gives a great visual to this truth when he says, “I often see inside the entrance of church buildings the words ENTER TO WORSHIP- DEPART TO SERVE, and I think I understand what they mean. However, it would be more biblical if the sign read: ENTER TO WORSHIP AND SERVE- AND DON’T QUIT WHEN YOU LEAVE THE BUILDING!”
The picture of what it looks like to serve one another is seen throughout scripture, especially in the New Testament. We are told to:
- Wash one another’s feet in John 13:14
- Prefer one another in Romans 12:10
- Not speak evil of one another in James 4:11
- Edify one another in Romans 14:19 and 1 Thessalonians 5:11
- Speak to one another in psalms, hymns and spiritual songs in Ephesians 5:18-19
- Receive one another in Romans 15:7
- Admonish one another in Romans 15:14 and Colossians 3:16
- Care for one another in 1 Corinthians 12:25
- Minister gifts to one another in 1 Peter 4:10
- Greet one another in 1 Corinthians 16:20
- Serve one another in Galatians 5:13
- Not “bite and devour” one another in Galatians 5:15
- Bear one another’s burdens in Galatians 6:2
- Forbear and forgive one another in Ephesians 4:32
- Submit to one another in Ephesians 5:21 and 1 Peter 5:5
- Comfort and encourage one another in 1 Thessalonians 4:18
- Exhort one another in Hebrews 3:13
- Consider one another in Hebrews 10:24
- Pray for one another in James 5:16
- Be hospitable to one to another in 1 Peter 4:9
- Fellowship with one another in 1 John 1:7
All of these Biblical directions fall under this header of serving and when we act upon any of them, we are glorifying the Lord. For “just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve” (Matthew 20:28 NIV), so it should be with us as His disciples. When we give, go, and serve as the children of God, we bring pleasure to the Father.
Worship and helping our brothers and sisters are tightly connected. Worship and missions are also closely intertwined.
As you’ve probably heard it said about teaching your children, most things are caught, not taught. Therefore, we must not only understand these truths of worship and teach them to our children, we must also show them how to live a life of giving, going, and serving.