I missed the 90’s and early 2000’s worship music but even I know that Micheal W. Smiths’ song “Heart of Worship” is a big deal!
Holy moly we made it another month! No one is more surprised than me. This commitment has definitely cost us something. But these small moments of faithfully picking up our bible and reading, I believe, will have the most impact on our lives.
2 Chronicles 30: 1—31: 21
In today’s reading king Hezekiah and the inhabitants of Judah and the surrounding towns continue to restore the worship of God in Jerusalem. This section shows that worship is about the heart and not the preforming the prescribed rites perfectly. They could not get it together in time to celebrate Passover on time, so they did it a month later. This was not following the rites exactly how God told me to, but it was honored because God sees the heart of the worshiper. We have seen other instances where the worshipper has gone their own way and been disciplined by the Lord. That was because their heart was in a posture of, “I want to worship you this way God and you are going to accept it because I have put a lot of time and effort into it and everyone thinks I am good.” That is the wrong heart posture to have, just ask Cain.
Romans 15: 1-22
Yesterday Paul told us to be aware of our convictions as we are being transformed. He told us if we think something is wrong and we do it anyway we are sinning. And worse than that is when we cause a fellow believer to sin by convincing them to go against their conscience. Today he gives us the challenge of using our strength of faith to be considerate of others who may not be in the same strong season as us. God works in us, after salvation, through processes. I’ll give you an example.
When I first got saved, I was a chain smoker. (Get off your high horse and stop judging me!) I fully believe that Pastor Doug knew my smoking was a sin. I believe he knew I was using it as an idol to cope with stress instead of trusting God. BUT Pastor Doug was strong enough in his faith to give God the time He needed to move me along that process. He built me up in the Lord, and then let the Spirit do His thing, convict me of sin. If sinners cannot clean themselves up enough to be pleasing to God, then the same is true of saved sinners. They cannot get saved and then use their own strength to “get it together.” If someone gets saved and you instantly tell them all the things they are doing wrong, you will crush them. We have to focus on teaching our “weaker” sisters and brothers about The Lord, not about how they have to stop sinning and get it together.
Now this process will require us to rely on God for patience. It is much easier to demand people straighten up and fly right. It is harder to walk with them through the messy process of sanctification. But walking with them through that process is infinitely more glorious and beautiful. When you do that you get a front row seat to “miracle moments” where people realized they had just acted out a fruit of the Spirit when before they would have acted out a fruit of the flesh.
Find it hard to accept messy people? Jesus knows that. But He accepted you when you are a mess, so you do the same for His other children. This mission is fitting for followers of Christ Jesus.