Help Students Get Back To The Heart Of Worship

For a variety of reasons in the last 8 months my family and I have had the privilege to visit a combination of about 25 churches, conferences and retreats.   Each of them has had a unique flavor of what they define as “worship.”  To most this is a combination of the music played, the service brought, and traditions displayed.  We have read written prayers, sang hymns, rocked out with a “contemporary” band, and taken communion in a myriad of ways.  Here is what is interesting in our journey:

Worship Praise

1.  My children have been exposed to many approaches to teaching about Christ.

2.  EVERY single leader I have met loves Jesus, with a desire to lead their congregation in “worship.” (Whether or not the people they shepherd respond.)

We have heard it said that worship is more than music and singing, it is about a life poured out for the Lord.   I believe each of us connect with Him in different ways.  Worship to me is about taking the time for our total and complete focus to be on Him alone.  My children have come out of each arena and have learned to critique what they do and don’t get out of it.   I would argue this has little to do with worship and more to do about style. My son has expressed a couple of times,  “You can tell the pastor really cares about Christ, and sharing Him with us.”

This is a life lived in worship.  Their eye is to see the Lord first and foremost.

In this process my children had a chance to stand in front of a large congregation recently and ask a crowd of people they didn’t know, to support a cause they have started to support Haiti.  They hated it.  It pushed them to remember who they were in this for:  their comfort or their Savior.   My family has seen in their own lives ways they CAN worship the Lord.  Sometimes it is through singing or the Word, other times it is in service, always it is in the everyday learning to know Christ and bring the Good News to a broken world.

A couple of weeks ago at one church we were lead to sing something that is quite popular on Christian radio right now.  Afterwards as a family we discussed it.  My daughter mentioned,  “I like the song, but I don’t get why we were singing more about us than the Lord.”   Learning to see his face in every setting is a valuable lesson.  Too often we compartmentalize our worship and teach students to do the same.   We intimate,  “Here at church, or youth group,  the conference,  at camp,  in this setting this is where we worship God.”  While it is amazing to be in a gathering with other Believers “worshipping” it is hardly the definition of this word.  Instead 25 settings have taught us this:

Worship is about learning to be in awe of God in every setting, in every moment of every day. Can we teach this to the generation behind and ahead? How are you coming back to the heart of worship with your students?

Leneita

photo credit: via