Come Let Us Worship

Lifting Hands in Worship

All nature worships

Psalm 95

Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord;
let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation.
Let us come before him with thanksgiving
and extol him with music and song.
For the Lord is the great God,
the great King above all gods.
In his hand are the depths of the earth,
and the mountain peaks belong to him.
The sea is his, for he made it,
and his hands formed the dry land.
Come, let us bow down in worship,
let us kneel before the Lord our Maker;
for he is our God
and we are the people of his pasture,
the flock under his care.

Everyone worships something. Some worship nature, some wealth, some humanity. It is important to ask yourself what you worship for you will become like what you worship (Psalm 115, Rom. 1:25). With this in mind there is only one worthy of worship the creator of all things.

Worship of God starts with bowing before Jesus, bowing in spirit and in truth (John 4:23-24). In other words humbling myself and calling Him Lord of all. This act of worship involves offering my body as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God. This holiness can only happen by God’s grace given to me through Jesus Christ (Romans 12:1). Thus, I begin worship by bowing before the Shepherd of my soul and end being made into His likeness. Jesus becomes for me the Alpha and Omega of worship.

Spring Cascade of Color

Spring Bouquet

Balsamroot spill over from the heights

This picture, from above my home, shows the Spring cascade of color.

The desert and the parched land will be glad;
the wilderness will rejoice and blossom… But only the redeemed will walk there,
and the ransomed of the Lord will return.
They will enter Zion with singing;
everlasting joy will crown their heads.
Gladness and joy will overtake them,
and sorrow and sighing will flee away. Isaiah 35:1, 9-10

My hope is not in the beauty of this world, but in Jesus my creator, my redeemer, my shepherd, my king. Only in Him do gladness and joy reside forever. Only in Him will sorrow and sighing be excluded from spoiling eternity.

Harbinger

Glacier Lily

Harbinger of Spring

The Glacier Lily is one of the first wildflowers announcing Spring. It is a welcome harbinger of all the beauty coming in the weeks ahead.

To get this picture I had to get down close to the ground, upon trying to get up my joints and back complained mightily. The groan told me Spring had long since come and gone for my body. But those aches and pains reminded me of another harbinger that holds an even greater hope.

For while we are in this tent (our mortal body), we groan and are burdened, because we do not wish to be unclothed but to be clothed with our heavenly dwelling, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life. Now it is God who has made us for this very purpose and has given us the Spirit as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come. 2 Corinthians 5:4-5

The Holy Spirit is a harbinger of what is to come. But more than that, God’s Spirit is an initial deposit in us of all the good He wants to bestow.

Because of His Spirit within, I can rejoice in my groaning for I know it is temporary, and God will use it to mold me into something far greater than the Glacier Lily.

The Well-worn 23rd Psalm

ps23

Aspen grove, Grand Canyon North Rim

This psalm is so familiar that reading it my mind often goes on auto-pilot, wandering unthinking through the words. Other times I get sidetracked into some memory from childhood. When this happens I have to remember to ask the Holy Spirit to open my eyes and heart, to make these verses jump off the page. After all Jesus calls the Word of God life giving food (Matthew 4:4). Isaiah compares the Word of God to rain and snow sent to accomplish a mighty task, for God’s power stands behind it (Isaiah 55:10-11). Jeremiah 23:29 declares: “Is not My word like fire, and like a hammer that breaks rock to pieces?” So when the words just sit on the page lifeless, I need to ask God for help.
The following is not the final word on this psalm but what I needed for this day.

The 23rd Psalm is about God’s relationship with me:
It is not a prayer, that I say, asking the Lord to be my shepherd. It is God saying “I am your shepherd, I will watch over you.
It is not about my finding water, or a place of rest — I just follow.
It is not about what I try to achieve. He is the one who directs me in path of righteousness by the power of His name.
He is there in darkness and in light, in the good and the bad, no matter where, always, no time outs.
It is not about what happens when I am good enough, or wise enough, or have faith enough. It is God telling me about His relationship to me because it is by His grace, and love, and forever.
Thus the 23rd Psalm is not my prayer to God, but His prayer to me.