None-the-less

All of my life in EVERY season… You are still God, You are the reason I live…. You are the reason I worship….

I simply love the lyrics above!  How many of you are nodding in agreement with me?  Yet, this is the tough question for you and for me too – how many of us are singing this from the bottom of our hearts and not just with the tip of our tongues?  How many of us are worshipping God with this song and more in both Spirit and in truth and not merely getting carried away with the ‘atmosphere’ and the emotional tug of the music or the words for the duration of the worship only?

What characterizes the season you are going through right now?  What is the season you are in?  Is it the winter of wilderness or hibernation where God keeps you secretly to be in complete communion with Him and to prepare you for the seasons ahead – like the trees that are naked to the point that the twigs and branches are clearly seen without the lush leaves?  Or you in the promising season of spring – where the buds are appearing and the doves are cooing with many signs of encouragement? Perhaps you are in the summer of fulfillment where you are enjoying the fruit of the labour of the past, reaping all that you sowed… Or are you stepping into preparation of the wilderness time, aka autumn in your life  where the leaves are falling and the ground has a natural yet crispy colourful carpet of fallen leaves?

Spend some time pondering on these questions… and keep your answers in mind when you reach the latter part of this blog post!

The lyrics mentioned at the start of this post, reminds me of Habakkuk’s resolution in response to hearing of God’s fame:

Though the fig tree does not bud
    and there are no grapes on the vines,
though the olive crop fails
    and the fields produce no food,
though there are no sheep in the pen
    and no cattle in the stalls,

yet I will rejoice in the Lord,
    I will be joyful in God my Savior (Habakkuk -3:17-19).

It also makes me think of Paul’s declaration of sincere faith:

I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want – Philippians 4:12 (NIV).

I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need (NASB).

Both the above men of God have set the example to truly worship God in every season – whether the season of having plenty or even in the season of starvation with nothing on hand.  They make a ‘DECISION” to worship Him no matter what.. . Paul says he has learned the secret of doing so.

We sing the song that we worship God in every season…  and that He is the reason to live.

Are we really able to worship God in EVERY season?  What about in the season of job loss or sickness or pressing needs even right down to the bread and butter or in the midst of natural disasters or turmoil in the country’s politics to the point of war or even in persecution?

If you are in this season, are you really able to worship God?

Which brings me to the next question – what is worship? Worship is humbling ourselves and exalting God? Are we able to humble ourselves to the goodness of our Heavenly Father knowing He knows best despite His not having “blessed” us in the way we would have wanted?  Are we able to worship Him with a heart full of thanks knowing that we rely on His strength, not our resources – whether it be the work of our hands, our bank balance, our health etc – and that His grace is sufficient for us in our weaknesses (and lacks).

Jesus said that God is looking for true worshippers – those who worship in spirit AND in truth..  Are our words empty words or deceiving words? Or are they words of truth?  Are our words based on truth – remembering that Jesus Christ declared that NO ONE comes to the Father but through Him (Jesus) alone as He is the way, the TRUTH and life.  Our standard or rather measuring stick of truth isn’t about doing right or wrong but rather loving God to such a manner that we do what He wants each one of us to do.

Are we basing our worship and prayers on truth or are we misrepresenting God by quoting or holding onto scripture out of context.  For example if the verse we are quoting is in the midst of a certain topic (the prec eding verses and the verses that continue are of one topic) but we use that particular word for something else ignoring the context, then we are misrepresenting God. Likewise when we take a word out of the context of the Bible as a whole making it a ‘contradictory’ word to other verses, then we are making a liar out of God – that’s not worshipping in truth.

Coming back to the song, lovely words, “You are the reason I live”.  Is it really the reason we live?  Or is God on the side of our life, given second place?

What are you truly living for?  How do you utilize the resources that you have on hand – whether it be time, talents, gift, money, food, shelter etc?  How do you plan on how to use the resources?  Where do your priorities lie?  Is it for your education, career, spouse, children, ministry goals and namen… or is it really God?  Are we truly living for God? What or who – first and foremost – does your heart beat for?

A genuine believer will indeed follow heed to the words of Jesus and seek FIRST (not in second place) the KINGDOM of GOD and HIS righteousness believing in His Word that all our needs will then be met. When we truly “believe” (not what we confess to believe but rather what we believe deep in our heart) will stem out in our actions.  The works will mirror our faith, our trust in Him. Are we truly being Kingdom minded?  Are we loving God with our ALL?  If so, from that will automatically stem out our love for one another.

Remember God is seeking true worshippers, not just those who sing with a beautiful voice or those who sing with emotions poured out or those who sing for a great deal of time.  At the end of the day, it boils down to our relationship intimacy with Him and with others… in NONE – or in THE LESS of seasons too.

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