God desires you to bring your gift of worship to Him every day, in your personal and corporate worship. He also desires that you be an encouragement to those around you. Yeah, worship is that important!
Our church, this body of believers cannot function properly if you’re not prepared to give your gift of worship. Listen to this:
1 And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all He has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind He will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship Him.
2 Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.
3 Don’t think you are better than you really are. Be honest in your evaluation of yourselves, measuring yourselves by the faith God has given us.
4 Just as our bodies have many parts and each part has a special function,
5 so it is with Christ’s body. We are many parts of one body, and we all belong to each other.
6 In His grace, God has given us different gifts for doing certain things well. So if God has given you the ability to prophesy, speak out with as much faith as God has given you.
7 If your gift is serving others, serve them well. If you are a teacher, teach well.
8 If your gift is to encourage others, be encouraging. If it is giving, give generously. If God has given you leadership ability, take the responsibility seriously. And if you have a gift for showing kindness to others, do it gladly.
I Corinthians 12:12-26
12 The human body has many parts, but the many parts make up one whole body. So it is with the body of Christ.
13 Some of us are Jews, some are Gentiles, some are slaves, and some are free. But we have all been baptized into one body by one Spirit, and we all share the same Spirit.
14 Yes, the body has many different parts, not just one part.
15 If the foot says, “I am not a part of the body because I am not a hand,” that does not make it any less a part of the body.
16 And if the ear says, “I am not part of the body because I am not an eye,” would that make it any less a part of the body?
17 If the whole body were an eye, how would you hear? Or if your whole body were an ear, how would you smell anything?
18 But our bodies have many parts, and God has put each part just where he wants it.
19 How strange a body would be if it had only one part!
20 Yes, there are many parts, but only one body.
21 The eye can never say to the hand, “I don’t need you.” The head can’t say to the feet, “I don’t need you.”
22 In fact, some parts of the body that seem weakest and least important are actually the most necessary.
25 This makes for harmony among the members, so that all the members care for each other.
26 If one part suffers, all the parts suffer with it, and if one part is honored, all the parts are glad.
Ephesians 4:15, 16
15 …we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church.
16 He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love.
And, most of us know about being part of the body of Christ…many of us have sat through dozens if not hundreds of sermons and devotions about this concept. But, putting it into action is hard.
Here’s a great way to think about how your personal worship affects the corporate worship experience. In worship, if the arm doesn't let the elbow move, clapping is difficult. If the hips don’t let the legs move, how can you dance? The person who is the arm or the hip must worship for the legs and hands to worship. They may worship without the hip or arm, but with them the worship is so much greater. Being part of the body is so much deeper than just belonging. It is a responsibility to the rest of the body.
Being part of the body is so much deeper than just belonging. It is a responsibility to the rest of the body.
Most of you know how incredibly talented I am…but I guarantee what I am about to show you will blow your mind. I only know of a few other people in the world who have this talent. Are you ready? I can clap with one hand. Would you like to see?
But here’s the deal about this talent. It’s amusing for a few seconds, but one, it really looks stupid, two, it gets tiring really quickly, and three, it just isn’t nearly as powerful as when I use both my hands and arms.
And that’s how corporate worship works. When you and I come wanting to do our own thing without thinking about God or those around us, we end up looking like stupid jerks, we get emotionally drained, and our corporate worship isn’t nearly as powerful and pleasing to God as it could be.
Yeah, worship IS that important!
(Tomorrow I'll post Part 7...Check out the other parts of this series: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, and Part 5)