FROM THE PASTOR’S HEART
Worship and Service Part 3: Different Effects
Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. (Romans 12:1 NIV)
Over the past two weeks, we considered two distinctions between worship and service – that is, a difference in identity and a difference in order of priority. Today, we will explore the differences in the effects of worship and service on our lives.
Worship reinforces our sense of identity as a child of God. We are truly God’s children, but sometimes we have doubts about this identity, and make attempts to seek verification for it. Worship is the only way for us to confirm our identity as God’s children, not through works or service.
On the other hand, service spurs our spiritual growth. Worship is about us approaching God directly, while service is about us serving God indirectly through serving the people around us. Sometimes, when we choose to love and serve people with God’s love, and especially when we do so in a principled way, instead of receiving approval, appreciation and acceptance from others, we can be judged to be meddlesome, weak and insensible, or persons with a hidden agenda. As a result, we could be ostracised, misunderstood, bullied, rejected, and even regarded as an enemy. However, we can overcome such struggles and wounding by receiving healing in Christ, so that our spirit man will be renewed and grow in maturity, and we can realign ourselves with God’s desires and purposes once again. In fact, Jesus has already set the example for us by learning obedience from what He suffered (Heb 5:8).
Finally, let us consider how we can move from worship into service, and transit from a child of God to a servant of Christ. Such a change can happen in an instant. When worshippers connect with God, and receive His unconditional love, we also experience His deep concern for the lost and broken. We will begin to see the world through God’s eyes, and demonstrate His love to the people. We will also lay aside our identity as a child of God, and take on the identity of a servant of Christ to love and serve others.
May each one of us have an abundant life of worship and an abundant life of service!
Rev Herman Kan