There’s something about hearing a song that the words really captures your heart and speaks to you in a way that words can’t really describe. I was listening to Israel Houghton’s song Jesus be the center of it all (great song, highly recommend it!) and there’s a moment where the music is playing and he is just talking and he mentions a song by Matt Redman and he recites the following lyrics from the song, “When the music fades and all is stripped away and I simply come. I’ll bring You more than a song, for a song in itself is not what You have required. You’re looking into my heart. I’m coming back to the heart or worship and it’s all about You. It’s all about You, Jesus.” So of course I have to go on YouTube to listen to this Matt Redman song and I’ll be honest it’s not really my type of music however when I simply focused on the lyrics alone I could feel a shift in my heart. The irony of this song is that it is talking about what are you going to do when the music stops…it’s like when you don’t have the praise and worship team to push you into worship can you still get into the heart of worship. When there is no show, no one around, just silence, and all the “stuff” is stripped away are you able to get to the true heart of worship. Can we really praise and worship God with our lives when there is no music, no one around, and we’re left alone with just Him.
John 4:23-24 says, “Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and His worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth” (NIV). We can’t just put on a show for people on Sunday mornings during service. God wants our full hearts and our full service. The chorus of this song says “I’m coming back to the heart of worship and it’s all about You Jesus. I’m sorry Lord for the thing I’ve made it, when it’s all about You.” Awhile ago, I asked God to show me my heart, show me where I fall short, where I am weak and what He revealed to me is that the way I was serving Him had become routine. It was more about doing what was “right” then serving Him from my heart from a place of devoted desire. I’m going to be honest this got me really discouraged and really frustrated because I’m thinking okay…so what am I suppose to do??? Obviously what I was doing wasn’t working and I thought I was doing something…yeah, no lol. The purpose of God revealing this to me was for me to get back to the true heart of worship where it’s all about Him. Truly all about Him, not about service, works, doing good deeds, but simply all about Him. God so fully desires all the areas of our hearts. He is jealous for us, for those times that we ignore Him and replace Him with idols and neglect Him. He wants our attention and He wants it from a sincere and genuine place, not out of a feeling of obligation or duty. Serving God isn’t a chore; it’s a lifestyle that I will be honest is really hard sometimes but it is even more rewarding than the struggles that we face.
Israel Houghton says in his song that “it’s not about my pursuit of being the perfect Christian, speaking perfect christianese, logging my time on Sunday mornings. It’s about the privilege, the honor, of standing in Your presence, feeling Your touch, hearing Your voice, leaving changed.” What have we made it? What have we made our walk with Christ to be? God doesn’t want us doing this in vain or because we feel as though this is what we “should” be doing. I found myself thinking of how I would feel when all this is over and I leave this earthly dwelling and I stand before Jesus eagerly waiting to get into heaven to meet my Maker only to hear Jesus say to me “I never knew you, depart from Me.” The thought of that completely breaks my heart. God doesn’t want us doing things in His name, saying that we know Him and that we have a relationship with Him and it is all simply lip service. What about our life service? What good is it to attend church and say we love God and we know Him yet we live like hell the other 5-6 days that we are not in church. We have to get back to the true heart of worship. The world’s motto is fake it until you make it; the Word’s motto is faith it until you make it to the other side. We can’t afford to fake it for anyone and act as though we know God if our relationship is simply for show or to build a good name for ourselves. He wants more than our songs, more than our service, more than our attendance at church. He wants our hearts, our sincere hearts, and our lives that desire to serve Him and follow Him according to His will and not our own. Live intentionally, continue to work out your salvation.