You’re Wishing On The Wrong Thing

All of us see attributes in people we want. Superficially, we always say, “I want her hair” or “I want to look like him”. The truth is – God made us the way we are and that’s all there is to it. You can “tweak” your hair color with dye, eye color with contacts, body with exercise, but your hair is still brown, your eye color is still blue and your body is still pear-shaped no matter what.

Spiritually, God has given us all a calling. Our job is to fulfill that calling to the best of our ability. I have always known what my calling is but recently I found myself praying for a different one. Why? Probably because it was intriguing, because I was measuring “how close to God I was” by comparing myself with someone else and their gifts. This is far from the truth of things.

Someone close to me has the calling of being a prayer warrior. She sees visions, speaks with God, walks with Him, ascends to heaven, has recently fully stepped into her commission to heal.  Even though I knew my calling, I began diligently praying for visions and the outward appearance of her prayer life with the evidence of tongues, uncontrollable movement and passion. Then, in a recent church service it hit me. I wasn’t being obedient. There is nothing wrong with me praying for a better prayer life (which only comes with practice) – but I had to understand my calling was not her calling and vice versa. My calling is MY calling. Her calling is HER calling. It takes many different people with many different callings to reach the many different people in our communities.

You can’t compare where you are spiritually against someone else’s gifts and outward appearances either. Because I don’t shout aloud in prayer tongues doesn’t mean I am any less to God and it doesn’t mean she is anymore. Because she doesn’t sing like I do, doesn’t mean I’m closer to God than her and she is less.

My calling is to lead worship. My time needs to be spent studying, praying and seeking Him to learn all He has to show me for MY gift… not someone else’s. God spoke very clearly saying what I was praying for is not what He has called me to do for Him. Now that I’m not wishing it away – studying, praying and learning has gone to a new level for me. I’m excited to study about worship, learn how others worship, the ways God desires for us to worship Him, what we attain through it, how to get into a thin place of intimacy with Him… its fabulous stuff!

My point in this blog, whatever your calling embrace it. Study it. Learn it. When you are obedient, God will bless you for it. When you are obedient, God opens doors no man can shut. He is opening doors for me and I’m siked!!!!!!!!!!!!

Is It Performing or Worshipping

This is a subject close to my heart. I have personally been judged in this area with comments that slice through flesh wounding deeply. Wounds that took a long time to overcome and heal. Whether someone who sings, plays, dances, acts, teaches, hosts, preaches, organizes, or cleans for God or whether they have ulterior motives is something only that person and God truly knows. Obviously, there are situations where a person’s motives are transparent; however, many times it is not. If you are a singer and you want to truly sing for the Lord  –  you would imagine that person would sing a mix of everything they are asked to. It wouldn’t matter if it’s “high” or “low”, whether it’s “vocally ornate” or a “simple melody”… if you want to sing for God then you sing for God regardless of what you think you should or should not be singing and regardless of what you like or don’t like. If you play for God and that is your talent – then the same principle applies. You play the stuff you like and don’t like regardless and do it all with a good attitude. If you teach for the Lord – then you teach what God tells you to teach not what you think people need to hear or what pertains to your “current conflict” and you want to teach people a “spiritual lesson”.

At the end of the day my opinion is the only difference between performing or worshiping is the state of the heart. Both should be done in excellence, both should be done with 110% effort, both should be  practiced, both should be done to the absolute best of your ability. With that said… are you performing? Or are you worshiping? “So whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do everything for the glory of God.” (I Corinthians 10:31).

Not sure which one you are? Ask yourself a few questions…

1. Am I looking for others to “pat me on the back” and give me compliments?
2. Am I only concerned with God’s opinion of me?
3. What is my priority in what I am doing?
4. What is my purpose in what I am doing?

These are only a few questions of what could and SHOULD be asked. It’s a fine line to be walked but one I believe is capable and probable to be walked. Trust me when I tell you I have gone through this transformation. I remember a time when I was singing in a praise band and I only wanted to sing the notes that were “powerful” and “showy”. I wanted to finish singing and hear people tell me how great I sounded or how “anointed” I was. Now? Sometimes I just prefer being in the congregation because I can reach a level of private worship I can never reach while on a stage. I am speaking of singing because this is a talent I use for God. This applies to playing instruments or teaching or any other skill/talent used for God. My private worship time for God is most of the time more powerful than any level of worship done from a stage whether for leading worship or done to be part of an event.

“And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men.” – Colossians 3:23

If you have no idea of this “private worship” I am talking about – it’s probably because you are not taking the time nor the opportunities to experience it. Probably. There are always exceptions. When you date someone you are always wanting “alone” time because it’s more intimate than hanging out with a group. The same applies with God – He wants “alone” time with us for intimacy – to get to know us and us get to know Him. You have to have this or nothing else works. Trust me – I have been there and often learned the hard ways. This is why I expose my personal feelings and trials with complete strangers… so you can learn the easy way if there is such a thing.

Challenge: I challenge you today to reevaluate what you do for God. It doesn’t matter if it’s position oriented or if you are just in a congregation. Do you lift your hands hoping for others to SEE YOU, do you lead worship because YOU WANT the notoriety of it, do you offer to help collect items for a food drive because YOU WANT others to see how selfless you are? If you are answering these “no” – good for you – if you are honestly answering these “yes” then it’s time for you to sit with Jesus and figure out your true purpose. It might be what you are doing just needs to be  reevaluated or it might be time for a change. At the end of the day, God is a gentleman, so it’s up to you.

“And He gave some as apostles, and some as prophets, and some as evangelists, and some as pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of service, to the building up of the body of Christ” (Ephesians 4:11,12).

“Now there are varieties of gifts,” Paul said to the Corinthians, “but the same Spirit. And there are varieties of ministries, and the same Lord. And there are varieties of effects, but the same God who works all things in all persons” (1 Corinthians 12:4-6).

“Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, in proportion to our faith; if service, in our serving; the one who teaches, in his teaching; the one who exhorts, in his exhortation; the one who contributes, in generosity; the one who leads, with zeal; the one who does acts of mercy, with cheerfulness.” (Romans 12:6-8)

Don’t Be Stubborn

Half the problem in worship is getting past the thought of what your neighbor will think about you if you raise your hands… or what your friend will think if you audibly tell God you love him and shout His name…

If you are willing to overcome your fears – you will sink into a level of worship you have never experienced before. Which in turn, makes God (our Father) overly joyful! Don’t you want to please God and make your Father proud of you? Or will you choose your friends and neighbors over Him?

Think about it…