Worship in the kingdom
Recently during a time of worship, I glanced around the room and noticed that the looks on peoples faces seemed so serious. This didn’t make sense to me. We were singing about the nations loving and worshipping Yeshua forever in His kingdom. Imagining this put a big smile on my face, and I wanted everyone else to feel the joy I was feeling. (The highest levels of joy I experience in a given week usually happen during times of corporate worship).
Next, a picture, which I believe the Holy Spirit gave me, began to form in my mind of the benefits we receive as kingdom citizens. I saw us believing in Yeshua for our salvation, repenting of our sins, receiving forgiveness and new citizenship (Phil 3:20). Then crossing the border into His country (kingdom). We crossover into a new amazing reality. Rags to eternal riches!
Sin, sickness, selfishness, hopelessness… are no longer our inheritance. We enter into a new “normal” which includes life and life to the full (John 10:10). Healing, love, joy, righteousness, peace… are the new norm in the Holy Spirit (Rom 14:17).
Picturing myself standing inside Yeshua’s kingdom, I looked around at those worshipping Him together with me and saw only joy filled faces. Exuberant expressions of worship were normal. Sour faces didn’t exist. Shouts of joy and praise were accompanied by unhindered dances of celebration to the King.
I sensed the Lord say that we don’t have to wait for the full kingdom reality in order to worship like that. But He greatly delights in our wholehearted worship now, in the midst of the trials of this life. This childlikeness in worship moves His heart (Matt 18:3-4). The problem is we so easily forget the new kingdom reality we have crossed over into. The opinions of man, and the struggles with our fleshly desires and demonic opposition, can easily hijack our times of faith-filled corporate and personal worship.
Make the Choice
Engaging our free will in vibrant worship now, in this life, is a unique and temporary dynamic. One day we will have resurrected bodies and we will not feel the resistance we do now. The war in our body and soul will come to an end. Worshipping the King will be so easy and natural.
So, my encouragement is: let’s picture ourselves inside His kingdom now and live accordingly! Let’s connect with the exuberant worship happening 24/7 around His throne in heaven and bring it down to the earth. Forget about what others will think or say. Your worship is not a show for them but is for an audience of One.
Even when feeling weak, tempted or like we got up on the wrong side of the bed, we can still choose to make the most of our personal and corporate worship times, bringing our sacrifice of love and praise to Him. He will cherish and remember these decisions forever.
*A little tip for the days you ‘feel’ down and want to just “coast through” worship: choose to smile as you sing. Don’t stop smiling until your emotions begin to follow. By thanking God for the benefits you have as a kingdom citizen, and choosing to press on passed those negative emotions, you set yourself up for a transformational time of intimate connection with the King!
This article originally appeared on Revive Israel, May 29, 2019, and reposted with permission.
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Cody served on staff with YWAM for four years before moving to Israel. He joined Revive Israel's staff in 2013. He and his wife, Liat, help lead the youth group at Ahavat Yeshua Congregation and work together in Revive Israel’s international department. They have a passion to see the word of the Lord go out from Jerusalem through media and by going out to the nations themselves.