Hi, this is pastor Ken and these are my thoughts on a Thursday…Mountains upon mountains.
This week my wife and I are on vacation in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains. I have made mention in past podcasts of our love for this region. We honeymooned in these hills just about 10 miles from where I now sit in the living room of our tiny mountain cottage. One of the things we like about these hills is…the hills. They give texture to the land that offer unending interest. We love to ride in the mountains, whether by car or by motorcycle it is always enjoyable. Even a ride to town for supplies is an experience looked forward to. Every curve in the road reveals another mountain to be climbed…every hilltop scaled unveils another. When here, the mountains seem unending. They rise and fall as if they were the result of the ridges and valleys of the very thumbprint of God at creation.
It got me to thinking about a scripture from Psalms. Psalm 90 verses 1 and 2 in the New King James version read as follows; Lord, You have been our dwelling place in all generations. Before the mountains were brought forth, Or ever You had formed the earth and the world, Even from everlasting to everlasting, You are God. These mountains that I appreciate so much, that bring me such pleasure and peace are very, very old and yet they were brought forth by my God who is Himself timeless. As I said earlier they offer incredible interest when viewed and pondered and yet were the creation of a God who is infinitely more interesting. One who my feeble mind will never be able to know the full depth of, His ways being higher than my ways, and His thoughts so much Higher than my thoughts. As each hill and valley introduce me to another so are the number of ways to be excited about the relationship that our God desires with us. From the higher elevations in the area, one can see for many miles’ multiple mountains and valleys at once and yet the vastness of the expanse cannot compare to the love, mercy and grace bestowed upon each and every one of us…on any given day!
A God that great who can do and offer us so much, must have equally overwhelming requirements of us if there is to be any relationship to be had. Right? Not really. He desires that we allow Him to lead. Not only be a source of guidance, a reference for the times we don’t think we can handle, but truly be the leader of our lives. The One we find ourselves always behind…always following. He also asks that we learn to look at and treat others as He would, allowing them to have the same value in our eyes that we give ourselves and those naturally placed close to us. Micah 6:8 tells us that God has shown us what He requires from us, only to do justly, to love mercy and to walk humbly with God (Paraphrased).
Psalm 24 tells us that, The earth is the Lord’s, and the fullness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein. It is all His, created for His pleasure and purpose, provided by His hand. The Bible tells us that in His very creation; how awesome He is…is revealed to us.
There is one thing God desires however that He does not create for Himself. One commodity so valuable to Him that it must come from a source that He did not simply create for Himself out of nothing like everything else He created. Our worship. God desires that we worship Him. Psalm 100 tells us precisely how to offer Him the worship He desires of us while we live here. Make a joyful shout to the Lord, all you lands! Serve the Lord with gladness; Come before His presence with singing. Know that the Lord, He is God; It is He who has made us, and not we ourselves; We are His people and the sheep of His pasture. Enter into His gates with thanksgiving, And into His courts with praise. Be thankful to Him, and bless His name. For the Lord is good; His mercy is everlasting, And His truth endures to all generations.
Interestingly there is no part of this scripture that refers to worshipping this way once a week. There isn’t even a reference to it being a daily encounter. No, it refers to a desired perpetual state of existence. We are to have a heart of worship all the time. Perhaps that is why His creation is so expanse and diverse, so that we never run out of “wow factor” to keep that heart of worship perpetually offered. The Lord’s prayer asks that God’s will be done on earth as it is in Heaven. Do you know what worship looks like there? Revelation 4:8-11 describe it for us …Day and night they never stop saying: “ ‘Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty,’ who was, and is, and is to come.” Whenever the living creatures give glory, honor and thanks to him who sits on the throne and who lives for ever and ever, the twenty-four elders fall down before him who sits on the throne and worship him who lives for ever and ever. They lay their crowns before the throne and say: “You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they were created and have their being.”
Let’s learn to worship Him better shall we? Let’s do our best to recognize that He is worthy of it every minute…of every hour…of every day. Yes, we can do it. I’m acutely aware that life offers lots of distractions and responsibilities that your enemy is trying to convince you right now make perpetual worship an impossibility, but God does not make requirements of us that are impossible. If He wants it…and we give it…it will not be to our demise. Worship Him. Worship Him while you work, worship Him while you fulfill those responsibilities. Learn to worship Him in all things and at all times. And for the rest of this week anyway, I’ll worship him when I turn another curve and see another mountain.
So now, with hearts full of the worship your God deserves…go be awesome!