“You okay? You, uh, I don’t know–you look a little distracted, there.”
“Well, I guess I am. I just drove all the way here, parked and was almost in the building without remembering the trip.”
“Dude. Earth to Major Tom. Swing by my office. I just got that new Keurig 2.0 yesterday. That puppy’ll make up to four cups at a time, and it’s lookin’ like you could use at least one right now! C’mon . . .”
We’ve all done that. Weird, isn’t it, to suddenly stop right in the middle of yet aNOther interoffice memo, eyes unfocused, desperately trying to remember how you got there that morning?
God designed us each with an amazing mind that quickly picks up repetitive patterns. After 21 days of consistent similar activity, Brain says, “Okay, next. I got this one.” Amazingly, it does. You can go ahead and copy-and-paste that recipe for Tom Kha Gai while sending on the boss’s 13th memo to normal distribution. Ahem. ‘Delete’ is not in normal distribution, tempting though it may be.
Ever walk into your normal place of worship and not remember how you got there? Well, sure. Hate to admit it, but, yeah, I’ve made that trip a few times without remembering much about the morning prior to getting there. Common. Right?
Have you ever accidentally worshiped God?
That would be a ‘no’.
GOD: “When you call on me, when you come and pray to me, I’ll listen. When you come looking for me, you’ll find me. Yes, when you get serious about finding me and want it more than anything else, I’ll make sure you won’t be disappointed.” [Jeremiah 29:12-13]
“Hold the phone. Jeremiah twenty-nine elev—”
I know. We’re all adepts at taking a verse and stretching it to give a little bit of shade and comfort to our own pet wants. There’s no doubt that’s a powerful verse with an equally-potent promise. Yet in reading the entire chapter it becomes clear God’s not showering Heavenly blessings of rescue, renewed wealth and tons of wonderful stuff into anyone’s lives who aren’t meeting His conditions simply because they mouth the words of this verse. Sometime check out what He says in verse 23.
We can and do accomplish an astonishing number of things by rote, almost like a programmed departure route clearance: “Cobra 01, cleared for takeoff, Walmart 3 departure. Contact 99.1 FM. Released.” The car knows the way. Sit back and enjoy the drive. Dan? HEllo. Hel-LO-oh? Great. Shock ‘im again. Clear . . .
No one worships God by mistake. It’s intentional.
“It’s impossible to please God apart from faith. And why? Because anyone who wants to approach God must believe both that he exists and that he cares enough to respond to those who seek him.” [Hebrews 11:6]
“I’ve been surprised sometimes by unexpected answers and blessings.”
Of course you have. Yet you’ve never worshiped by mistake. It was on purpose; you went expecting to hear from God.
“It’s who you are and the way you live that count before God. Your worship must engage your spirit in the pursuit of truth. That’s the kind of people the Father is out looking for: those who are simply and honestly themselves before him in their worship. God is sheer being itself–Spirit. Those who worship him must do it out of their very being, their spirits, their true selves, in adoration.” And, friend, that’s Jesus Himself talking, recorded in John 4:23-24.
Surprised by worship?
Wull . . . not hardly.
© D. Dean Boone, August 2014