Read His Words Before Ours!
Jesus deserves our worship.
He deserves our praise.
As I worshipped God just last Sunday, He revealed Himself to me in new and intimate ways.
He called me to offer something I wasn’t sure I could offer.
But when I did,
it led to an encounter with God I’ve never quite experienced before.
As I worshiped in song, I sang because I knew the reality of all He’s done for me before.
I sang because I know what He will do for me in the future.
I sang because I have walked through dark valleys, and I know He has never left my side.
Jesus paid it all for me, and because of that, I owe Him my everything.
But what if I wasn’t feeling those things?
What if I’m walking through a valley and I feel incredibly alone?
What if I can’t remember what He’s done for me in the past?
Does He still deserve my worship even then?
EVEN THEN Jesus deserves our worship and our praise.
EVEN WHEN we are in the middle of the valley of the shadow of death….
EVEN IF He doesn’t answer our prayers like we want….
He still deserves my worship.
Why worship God when we don’t feel like it?
Paul shares why Jesus not only deserves our worship,
but will one day receive everyone’s worship.
Philippians 2:6-11 is a hymn written, not necessarily by Paul, but reiterated by him as it was circulated and sung throughout the early church.
Imagine yourself there with me.
A small house, packed with 15-20 bodies. Jews and Gentiles, slave and free, women, men, and children. All declaring the beauty of Christ together as one body!
Voices raise, a simple, repetitive tune takes shape, and truth is preached as hearts are knit together by the incredible beauty of the Lord Jesus!
“Adopt the same attitude as that of Christ Jesus,
Who, existing in the form of God,
did not consider equality with God
as something to be exploited.”
He didn’t need equality with God, because Jesus IS God.
He was God in the beginning and He is God even now.
The divinity has always been His.
“Instead, he emptied himself
By assuming the form of a servant,
Taking on the likeness of humanity.”
Jesus willingly emptied Himself of His exalted position and laid aside His divine privileges to become a human being. A human! And while we are created in His image, we are completely incomparable to God. The humility and love it took to lower Himself from dwelling as God to dwelling with humanity is utterly incomprehensible.
Jesus didn’t just become a human, He came as a servant.
The Lord came down to serve those which ought to be serving Him.
“And when he had come as a man,
He humbled himself by becoming obedient
To the point of death –
Even to death on a cross.”
Jesus Christ, who IS God, humbled Himself enough to become man, then humbled Himself even more to become obedient to all that was required of Him. Though Jesus retained His divinity even as He walked this earth, He didn’t rely on His divine powers to save Him, make His load easier, or remove Himself from the grip of death. No, He WILLINGLY died.
Jesus didn’t die quickly. He didn’t quietly pass away in His sleep. He died a death reserved for foreigners and slaves, a death that was torturous and degrading.
As God of all, He never had to die, but He chose it.
“For this reason God highly exalted Him
And gave Him the name
That is above every name,
So that at the name of Jesus
Every knee will bow -”
Because of Jesus’ great humility, His obedience, and His choosing to die sacrificially, God exalted His name above all names. Salvation is found in His name alone!
His Name holds all authority for all eternity.
“In heaven and on earth
And under the earth
And every tongue will confess
That Jesus Christ is Lord,
To the glory of God the Father.”
When time has ended, and the final battle between God and His archenemy Satan has been won, every knee will bow.
Every angel, every woman, every child, every man, every demon,
all will declare that Jesus Christ is the Lord!
Not all will be saved for eternity, that window will have passed, but all will recognize His rule and reign as King of Kings!
All will sing His praises!
And all of this ultimately brings God glory!
So, my dear sisters, why do we worship even when we don’t feel like it?
EVEN WHEN we doubt God’s goodness?
We worship because Jesus is Lord.
We worship Him EVEN THEN because we will all bow before Him one day,
whether we choose to give our lives to Him now or not.
Let your worship be rooted in the truth of Christ’s character, not your fleeting feelings.
Because the One you worship is LORD of all!
If this Sunday you don’t feel like you can worship Him
because of the valley He has walked with you through,
or because of the way He has provided for you,
worship Him simply because HE IS GOD.
He deserves our praise EVEN WHEN.
This Bible study is property of Gracefully Truthful and was first published there as well. For more studies like this one, visit GracefullyTruthful.com!
Read His Words Before Ours!
1 Peter 1:13-16
1 Thessalonians 5:1-8
2 Timothy 4:1-5
Ever since writing for Gracefully Truthful, I’ve been continually amazed how the Lord perfectly aligns Journey Studies I write alongside my spiritual journey with Him.
We choose our Journey assignments months prior to writing,
and even longer before they ever go live on the website.
the Lord always leads me to write specific Journey Studies He knows in advance He will use to transform my heart.
This journey through 1 Peter has proven, yet again, God’s incredible timing and His miraculous voice through Scripture.
As Partners at GT, we committed to read through 1 Peter many times before we even began writing. Two weeks ago (which was months ago as you read my words today), I sat down to read and the tears began flowing as I fixated on the first chapter detailing birth into a living hope.
What I didn’t know when I chose this Journey was when it came time to write,
I’d be swinging from days of great hope to days that left me utterly hopeless.
Hopelessness has been hanging heavy here, Sisters.
But as I sat weeping with His Word, His Spirit breathed, and I was reminded of LIVING hope that is mine in Christ Jesus! Hope that is moving and breathing and actively working because of Jesus!
Our trials will result in “praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ!”
(1 Peter 1:7)
And because of that hope, sisters, that massive, freeing, and life-giving hope,
we land at 1 Peter 1:13…
One powerful word; don’t miss it!
Therefore means that “hope” doesn’t stop at “initial salvation”.
Yes, our salvation is certain and sure and these Scriptures that proclaim this glorious gospel are fully reliable because they are the very words of God that will not pass away. (1 Peter 1:25)
Yes! Hope is found here!
But “therefore” means it doesn’t stop there.
Therefore. Because of. For that reason. Consequently. It Continues…
Because our hope is so assuredly solid, we are called to prepare our minds for action, and take an active role in this living hope!
Our salvation, grounded in hope, is meant to catapult us forward into living with hope
as our inner minds shift.
At salvation, we surrender all we know of ourselves to all we know of the Savior, trusting Him not only to save us from Sin and Death, but to save us for the fullness of life. That radical transformation where we begin moving into life, comes as a result of an inner shift. A moving away from conformity to the ways of the world, and a moving into surrendered transformation as the Spirit remakes us into the image of Christ Jesus.
Transformed into holy.
Just as He is holy.
We can never earn holiness, Sisters.
It’s no secret you and I would never, ever reach the perfection of the Almighty God by our own effort. One little lie, one little lustful thought, and we are sinners.
We are justified and made eternally righteous once we choose to make Jesus the Lord of our lives.
We grow in our like-Jesus-ness through daily surrender as we keep our eyes fixed on eternal hope. This is sanctification through the work of the Spirit. If Jesus is ours and we claim His incorruptible inheritance waiting for us in Heaven, then we are called to conform to this gospel, and His holiness, leaving the ways of the world in the dust.
That means the TV shows we watch.
The movies we go to.
The people we spend most of our time with.
The places we hang out.
The way we think.
The way we conduct ourselves at work.
Everything about us should be different because of the therefore.
Because of certain hope in the trustworthiness of the Savior.
Our relationships should look different.
The way we dress should look different.
Our marriages should look different.
Our language should be different.
Not different because we’re trying so hard to look like Jesus.
Different because when we chose Jesus, an inner shift happened, hope grew,
we were made new.
We long to look like Him more than we long to look like
that cute mom we adore on social media.
For me, that’s a hard pill to swallow because I idolize, yes, idolize, other mamas.
Her hair is perfect, her kids look so put together, her house is clean, she’s so talented, AND she loves Jesus?! For a long time, I wanted to look more like her than I wanted to look like Jesus (sometimes I still do). I focused on transforming myself to become more like her instead of my King. Maybe that’s you too?
Eyes on holy.
When we say yes to Jesus, the radical inner shift begins.
I was about five when I asked Jesus to become my King; that’s when my inner shift began. Small, yes, but it was there. My focus changed from inward to upward, and I became passionate about others meeting Jesus! Hope grew the fruit of a transformed life.
Hope of salvation is not the end.
It’s the therefore that doesn’t stop there.
If He gave His life for me to live forever, surely, I can give my life to serve and love Him.
We have incorruptible hope.
It’s solid enough to anchor my everyday life and transform my heart toward holy!
This Bible Study is property of Gracefully Truthful, where it was first published. For other Bible studies like this one, check out GracefullyTruthful.com!
From Bible studies to blogs, articles to musings of the heart, Kendra's writings are unbarred and raw - exactly how she speaks.