In my book “The Isaiah Encounter: Living an Everyday Life of Worship” I pointed out that the origin of the word “worship” is an old English word whose modern day equivalent is “worth-ship.” Out of love God created worship as the way we can personally encounter Him and allow Him to change us and the trajectory of our life. When we have really experienced God—beyond just intellectual understanding— then we can’t help but give Him authentic love that affirms His infinite worth-ship. Worship is about acknowledging and proclaiming God’s worth, and worth is about what we value.
What we value in life determines what we aim for in life. For example, if we value what people think of us, we will probably aim for recognition and fame. If we value earthly security and things we will likely aim for material riches. Jesus put it this way:
“…Where your treasure is, there your heart will also be.”
In the same way, when we worship God, our very being and life will be oriented towards Him because we value Him above all else.
But there is another side to this equation.
One of the benefits I have found in worshipping God is this: God values you and me!
We live in a world where people’s worth is based on position, financial status, awards, and popularity. In short, people are de-valued. But God doesn’t operate that way. Jesus’ time on earth was marked by valuing and lifting up people that society and even religion had cast out or deemed unclean, sinful, worthless, or beyond consideration as human.
He valued and freed sinners, prostitutes, sick people, outcasts, lepers, and more. He reached out to an outcast woman whose life was a train wreck and gave her a new life at a well in Samaria. Her life was changed because she met the Son of God who valued her and offered her the living water of God’s presence.
Even as I worship God and remember that there is nothing I ever did to deserve my forever relationship with Him, I also hear His voice reminding me that He values and loves me beyond my understanding and comprehension.
Did you catch that? In worship, God also reveals how much He values us! You and I are the apple of God’s eye. The writer of Psalm 17 realized this when He wrote:
“Keep me as the apple of your eye.”
God values us so much that He proclaimed that anyone who harms us sticks their finger in the pupil (or apple) of His eye:
“Whoever touches you touches the apple of [God’s] eye.”
The message is clear: God intensely loves and values you and me!
An essential component of worshipping God is this: allowing Him to touch our hearts and minds with His love that affirms that we are His cherished child, of infinite worth. God’s gift in worship is the outpouring of His love into our very being, reminding us that He holds us in His everlasting arms because He values us as His adopted sons and daughters, purchased by Jesus Christ.
Whatever you are going through right now, please remember this: You are of endless worth to God, whose “worth-ship” is above all and without end!
God bless you.