This past weekend, our student ministries leader had a “rite of passage” gathering for his son who is about to begin high school. Basically, a group of men in his son’s life (including his dad and grandfathers) were invited to speak on given topics related to following Jesus, and then presented him with a momento to remind him of what they said.
I was humbled to be invited to this, and considering this young man is a developing musician with a heart for God, my topic to speak on was worship. As I thought and prayed about what to say, it seemed the obvious “momento” to present to this young man regarding worship was a cross. Without the cross, there is no true “worship.”
While preparing and presenting this information, I realized God was ministering to me and reminding me of what true worship really is. Below are the three thoughts on worship – as viewed through the cross – that I presented. I hope this ministers to you as it did to me:
- Worship Begins with the Cross. 1 John 4:10 says, “This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.” Worship is our response to God for who He is and what He’s done. We love Him because He first loved us. Worship is not something that we conjure up; Christ was crucified on the cross and rose again. We worship as a response to God in humble adoration of what He did on the cross.
- Good Worship Leaders Always Point to the Cross. Romans 9:16 says, “It does not, therefore, depend on man’s desire or effort, but on God’s mercy.” This verse makes it clear that only God can change hearts; man cannot do this. Thus, the aim of a worship leader is to point to the cross, and get out of the way.
- Your Identity is in The Cross. Colossians 2:13-14 says, “When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your sinful nature, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the written code, with its regulations, that was against us and that stood opposed to us; he took it away nailing it to the cross.” I told this young man that one day he may or may not become famous. Either way, his identity is in the fact that he was once dead and is now alive in Christ. All his (and our) sin is nailed to the cross. It’s important not to let the world tell us we are something better or worse than we really are: always covered by His grace.