Switching to a worship mindset
Our natural instinct is to do what we want. As children, if our diapers were hot, we were more than okay with tearing it off and running around naked. As adults, we may do the same with a mask. And as worshippers, we naturally want to crawl off God’s altar and do our own thing.
However, when we operate this way, we are not responding with a heart of true worship. We are behaving like natural men, not born-again people. “But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.” 1 Corinthians 2:14 (NKJV). When Christians behave like non-Christians, the Bible calls that carnal living. True worship in alignment with God carries spiritual power.
Paul and Silas were on their way to a prayer spot in the town of Philippi when a woman with a psychic spirit started following them, shouting, “These men are servants of the Most High God, who are telling you the way to be saved.” It was the right message but came from the wrong source. So Paul turned to her and commanded the evil spirit to leave, and it did (her psychic ability left). Paul and Silas were then arrested, beaten, and thrown into jail. They had to decide to be aligned or follow their own flesh.
So “About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them. Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everyone’s chains came loose.” Acts 16:25-26 (NIV)
Miracles happen as we worship, but before a miracle comes alignment. It’s our alignment that makes us stay the course and have a life of constant worship despite our circumstances. The Bible gives us a two-part method to align our mindset with God. “Do not conform to the pattern of this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind … .” Romans 12:2 (NIV)
a. DON’T BE CONFORMED
“Don’t let the world around you squeeze you into its own mould … .” says the J.B. Phillips version.
The worldly mindset says give the minimum and expect the most, which is opposite to a godly mindset. While worldly thinking is self-focused, godly thinking is God focused.
“So you must live as God’s obedient children. Don’t slip back into your old ways of living to satisfy your own desires. You didn’t know any better then. But now you must be holy in everything you do, just as God who chose you is holy. For the Scriptures say, “You must be holy because I am holy.”” 1 Peter 1:14-16 (NLT)
b. BE TRANSFORMED
What does it mean to be transformed? Metamorphosis – the term used to refer to the transformation of a caterpillar into a butterfly. It means to be changed into something completely different.
The Christian process begins when we first accepted Jesus as Saviour and Lord. In 2 Corinthians 5:17 (NIV) “… if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!” The Spirit of God started a transformation in our lives, and we need to cooperate with Him and actively participate in the process. This is our reasonable response to God’s mercy. His mercy is the motivation for our transformation.
To truly worship God, we need a worship mindset so that we can handle whatever heat comes our way. Join me next week for Part Five.