…With your prayer life? If you could sit down and talk to any one person in the world, who would it be? What are the chances that you could have an audience with the person you have in mind?
And yet, we can call on and share with the Creator of heaven and earth, just about anytime we choose to. In fact, He encourages us to pursue an audience with Him. In Jeremiah 33:2-3 the prophet wrote, “This is what the Lord says—the Lord who made the earth, who formed and established it, whose name is the Lord: Ask me and I will tell you remarkable secrets you do not know about things to come.” Our Heavenly Father encourages us to seek Him, call upon Him, wait upon Him, worship Him, give Him all our concerns and He promises to hear and help us.
Prayer – sharing with God, is an incredible privilege, yet I believe it is the most neglected privilege we as Christians have. How can you really get to know the LORD if you don’t spend time with Him?
One of my favorite writers is J. Oswald Sanders. He wrote a number of books that greatly enriched my own life. His book “The Power of Transforming Prayer” is a classic. He died in 1992, at age 90, but his influence lives on in many lives.
Sanders tells about the fact that our LORD’s disciples saw Him in many different settings — they saw Him teaching, doing miraculous feats, praying, etc. They could have made many requests of Him, but the one thing that seems to have impressed them most was our Lord’s prayer life. In Luke 11:1, we read of them making this request — “Lord, teach us to pray.”
Sanders basis his book on prayer, on what he believes make up the Lord’s prayer life. He sees the following components or elements in a well-balanced prayer life: Worship, or Adoration; Thanksgiving; Confession; Petition; and Intercession.
In this meditation, I want us to focus on Worship or Adoration as a part of our prayer life. An old English concept of Worship saw it as worthship. The disciples were intrigued by Christ’s relationship with the Father and I believe that was at the heart of their request, “Lord, teach us to pray.”
In response to their request, Jesus said, “This is how you should pray: Father may your name be kept holy. May Your kingdom come soon.”) Luke 11:2 NLT)
Matthew records it like this – “Our Father in heaven, may Your name be kept holy. May Your kingdom come soon. May Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” (Matt. 6:9-10 NLT)
Did you notice that in each instance Jesus referred to “Father?” I think what Jesus wanted them and us to learn is that prayer begins with God and His interests, before anyone or anything else. He used these terms — “Your name; Your kingdom; Your will: The prayer is half over before we get to our personal needs. When we pray, we should begin with a clear focus on our Heavenly Father and His worthiness to be worshipped and adored. Think for a moment about one of the most important verses in the Bible: John 3:16, “For this is how God loved the world: He gave His one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life.” (NLT) Can you read those words and not feel the need to worship, adore, and praise our Heavenly Father!
In Revelation 5:12 we read, “Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain, to receive … honor and glory and praise.” It is one thing to worship God for all the ways He blesses us, but it is entirely a different matter to worship Him for Who He is. He is holy. He is absolute perfection. He is love. He is excellent in all His ways.
Thomas Goodwin wrote, “I have known men who came to God for nothing else but just to come to Him because they so loved Him. They scorned to soil Him and themselves with any other errand than just to purely be alone with him in His presence.”
As I reflect on that statement, I conclude that worship is the loving ascription of praise to God for what He is, both in Himself and His ways. It is the bowing of the innermost spirit in deep humility and reverence before Him. In John 4:24 Jesus was speaking to the Samaritan woman and He said, “For God is Spirit, so those who worship Him, must worship in spirit and in truth.”
Our worship must be truthful. God knows our heart and He knows whether we really love and adore him. Is it Him we want to be with or are we trying to “butter Him up” because there is something we want just for ourselves? How deep does our love for the LORD really go? I think it is safe to say, “little love, little true worship.”
The Father delights in His Son and He wants us to do the same, because
“all the fullness of God dwells in Him in bodily form.” (Col. 1:19) It is through Christ that we have access to the Father. In John 14:6 Jesus declared, “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father, except through Me.”
I close this meditation with the words of Josiah Condor about our LORD —
“I thee, most perfectly expressed, The Father’s glories shine,
Of the full Deity possessed, Eternally Divine!
Worthy, O Lamb of God, art Thou. That every knee to Thee should bow.”
Let’s worship Him buy just wanting to be with Him, enjoying Him, and experiencing Him for who He is.
He is worthy, Pastor Leonard