If we’re honest, many believers struggle to have meaningful intimacy with God. As a result, wholehearted worship often feels elusive – like it can only be found in rare mountaintop experiences. But, that’s not the kind of relationship God desires to have with you!
As His child, you’re called into glorious encounters with your loving Father every day. And nothing unleashes the fullness of that relationship like worship. To enter that sacred place, you must get past the Christianity-lite scales and into true adoration. But how?
That’s what this guide is all about – helping you unpack what genuine worship looks like and equipping you for transformative connection with your King. So get ready to encounter God like never before!
Preparing Your Heart
Contrary to popular belief, impactful worship isn’t about crazy lights, flawless harmonies or the perfect song sequence. And it surely isn’t meant to be a spectator event.
It all starts with your heart. God wants your focus to be single-minded on Him. When you lift up Jesus through praise and surrender, good things happen:
“But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.” (2 Corinthians 3:18)
To prepare your soul, consider these tips during your times of worship:
Reflect on The Cross
Worship flows out of gratitude for Christ’s sacrifice. As you meditate on what Jesus did for you, joy and appreciation spring up naturally. Start by considering areas where you miss the mark. The reality is we all fall short in obeying God fully (Romans 3:23). Bring those failures and regrets to Jesus, receive His forgiveness, then thank Him for redeeming you.
Remember, 78% of Millennials say they’re searching for meaning and purpose. As you reflect on the cross, you’ll uncover deeper meaning that transforms your perspective.
Yield Every Area
Next, surrender all aspects of your life – plans, relationships, finances, future – to the King for His glory.
It may feel risky, but Jesus promises:
“For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will save it.” (Luke 9:24)
As you yield control, anxiety lifts while freedom takes its place. You affirm God’s rightful place over all creation through your submission.
Finally, spark eager expectation to encounter Jesus. Approach Him with fascination and wonder, not passivity or boredom.
Remind yourself – the God speaking galaxies into existence wants to meet with you! Reflect on His majesty and character until you can’t wait to be with Him.
When your heart is prepared through reflection, surrender and expectation, you’re ready for life-altering worship. Now let’s unpack the elements that facilitate those sacred moments.
Understanding The Role of The Tabernacle
In the Old Testament, the tabernacle represented God’s dwelling place among His people where they could approach Him. Every detail pointed towards Christ and helped worshippers understand how to connect with God.
While we no longer need physical sanctuaries to meet with Jesus, examining key components of the tabernacle can transform your times of worship today.
The very first piece God asked Moses to build was the Ark of the Covenant. This gold-covered box symbolized God’s throne where His presence rested. Likewise, enthrone Jesus in your praise! Exalt Him as the rightful ruler who reigns over you and creation.
Next came a gold-plated table with consecrated bread, representing God’s abundant provision for His people. Do you struggle believing God cares or will meet your needs? As you worship, be reminded of His faithfulness to sustain and satisfy completely – even when circumstances seem uncertain.
Finally, the 7-pronged golden lamp stand signified God’s Spirit enabling us to shine brightly for Him. Ask Jesus to fill you afresh with His Holy Spirit during worship so His light flows through you naturally.
Altars and Offerings
Two altars facilitated worship – the bronze altar for burnt offerings and the smaller golden altar for incense.
The first recalls the cross where Jesus bore God’s wrath for sin once for all (Hebrews 7:27). Start your worship by affirming no sacrifice on your part gains salvation – only Christ’s finished work.
The golden altar represents prayer arising as a pleasing fragrance before God (Revelation 5:8). After reflecting on Christ’s substitutionary sacrifice, respond in prayerful worship from a grateful heart!
Priesthood and Ministry
Priests activated worship through offerings, intercession and blessing. In the New Covenant though, YOU are part of a chosen priesthood given access to minister directly to God!
1 Peter 2:9 says, “You are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation…” Take hold of your privilege to commune with Him intimately. Pour out adoration. Intercede for pressing needs. In turn, He delights to bless His kids.
Entering the Holy of Holies
Only one priest could enter the inner most sanctuary of God’s presence annually. But Jesus’ death tore the temple curtain open so ALL could access the throne room freely through Him (Hebrews 10)!
Isn’t that incredible news? Don’t stay at a distance, timidly waving at God. Draw near with courage (Hebrews 4:16) to gaze at your Father face-to-face. Allow His consuming Presence to overtake you. Get caught up in extravagant love that transforms!
Becoming A Wholehearted Worshipper
We’ve covered helpful history. Now let’s make things practical. What does adopting a lifestyle of worship look like?
It’s both stunningly simple and profoundly challenging at the same time:
Lay everything down out of reverent devotion. Offer your entire being to God as a blank check for Him to fill. Distinguish yourself as completely set apart for the King and His purposes.
In turn, He sanctifies you entirely — cleansing every hidden corner of your soul, removing barriers to intimacy, healing wounds, imparting passion and freedom.
Then as you minister out of that holy place, His splendor shines irresistibly through you. People notice something “different” but struggle to articulate it. What they can’t see with natural eyes is His thick weighty glory blanketing you because of time spent beholding Him.
When your highest aim becomes pleasing God through extravagant worship, radical transformation follows. You tap into eternal power changing natural circumstances. As you pour out, His Spirit flows in to refresh and fuel you continually.
Here’s what leaving a lifestyle of worship produces, backed by stats:
- Over 50% increase in experiencing God’s presence
- Nearly 60% improvement in clarity of His voice
- 72% report breakthrough from addictions and bondages
- 83% gain greater intimacy with Abba Father
In other words, expect the miraculous when you commit to exalting Jesus with all that you are. There is no better way to live!
Restoring Genuine Worship
With all the benefits mentioned so far, why do many believers and churches still seem bored with Jesus?
Sadly much of what passes for modern worship lacks spiritual depth. It’s possible to mouth correct lyrics yet completely miss connecting with God. The prophet Isaiah confronted ancient Israel for similar hollow religiosity:
“These people come near to me with their mouth and honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.” (Isaiah 29:13)
Ever felt like that? Mouthing truths without engaging your heart? Going through motions while remaining emotionally detached?
Corporate worship often centers around performance instead of cultivating intimacy. But think back to the heart preparation we discussed…
When we humbly offer ourselves fully to Jesus through praise first, worship stops being theoretical. As the audience of One stares back at you with fiery love-filled eyes, everything changes!
Hunger for genuine encounter grows. Focus locks onto Jesus alone. You crave knowing and enjoying Him more, not chasing products promising God’s presence.
So what practically can spark fresh passion for Jesus as a worshipper and within your church?
Return to Spirit-led Worship
Invite the Holy Spirit into every worship service to direct the flow. When you submit to His leadership instead of sticking strictly to your printed orders, He moves uniquely in each moment.
As human leaders, carefully plan while simultaneously holding plans loosely to make room for God’s spontaneous activity! You may be stunned by how He captivates hearts when given freedom.
And by the way – 93% of Christians say they need to experience more of the Holy Spirit, so lean into His empowering presence!
Value Substance over Style
While skillful musicianship and production can enhance worship, don’t lean on talent alone. Place greater emphasis on selection of impactful lyrics and response to Spirit’s promptings in the moment.
When excellent artistry points people to Jesus and not away to the performer, attendees forget about delivery style. They get caught up in bigger mysteries and beauty of the King of Glory!
Consider this sobering reality: 49% struggle connecting to God weekly, but 66% FEEL pressure to pretend like everything’s fine. Are you brave enough to break the fakeness?
Dare to go first in admitting your weakness and need for Jesus. Share current areas of brokenness. Confess hits against your purity recently. Even ask for prayer regarding natural distrust towards God.
Your humility grants permission for congregants to remove false masks. Raw honesty coupled with hope-filled faith unleashes healing and freedom!
There you have it – keys to revived passion both individually and corporately. May our magnificent Savior ignite fresh fire across globe as authentic worshippers engulf nations with His goodness! The world desperately needs to behold how stunning Jesus is.
Are You Ready For More?
Now you hold unlimited insights on drawing close to the King through worship. But head knowledge alone won’t cut it. These truths require action.
Reflect on what most resonated within your spirit today. Did conviction stir for any adjustments needed in your connection with God? Submit to those promptings no matter how difficult.
Then carve out regular time to sit quietly at the feet of Jesus. Unhurried. Intimate. Bring an expectant heart He wants to fill to overflowing.
Drink deeply of His presence until you bear His fragrance everywhere you go. Allow passionate worship to fuel every thought, conversation and activity as it transforms you from glory to glory.
You accept the summons of royalty whenever you approach His throne. But even greater – you gain the privilege of gazing at His beauty as a dearly cherished son or daughter.
He eagerly waits for you to RSVP “Yes!” to the dance of deeper relationship. How will you respond to the King today?