Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Learn How To Let God Bless You - Tommy Walker

The Westminster Confession says that the chief end of man is to worship God and enjoy Him forever. I love this old truth but I think John Piper says it in an even greater way. He says, "worship God by enjoying Him forever." Through many years of leading worship in nearly every kind of situation, I've discovered a secret that helps me every time I use it. It's learning how to let God bless me!

I know it sounds very simple and even selfish, but like Isaiah 64: 6 says, "All our righteous acts are like filthy rags and there is no good thing within us." We should know that we can only give what God has given to us first. It's only spiritual pride that says we can grit our teeth and produce some kind of eternal goodness of our own. I can't tell you how long it took me to figure out that I wasn't more spiritual if I dreaded doing a religious activity. Not only that, but I always thought that if I really had fun doing something at church, it couldn't have been worth much.

Some of you who grew up in church like I did, might know what I'm talking about. Well, here's what I'm trying to say. You can give God much more glory by being a person that has joy that is found in Him, than an unhappy person who only does everything correctly. That kind of a person is called a hypocrite. How awesome it is that we serve a God who wants us to delight in Him (Ps. 37: 4) and taste and see that He is good (Ps. 34: 8).

I think Christian worshipers should be the happiest, most fulfilled, and most joyful people on Earth. The reason we religious folk get nervous when anyone starts talking about enjoying anything, is because we've been taught how to enjoy everyone and everything but God. That's the key. Our focus and delight should be in Him. The Psalm says that at His right hand are pleasures forevermore! Is God's Word egging me on to be a pleasure seeker? You bet - as long as that pleasure is found in Him. Those who have truly had a glimpse of His beauty and tasted of His goodness, know that there really is joy unspeakable and full of glory. We can agree passionately with the Psalmist and say, "better is one day in His courts then a thousand anywhere else!"

Have you ever seen a worship leader or any kind of Christian for that matter, who is nervous about doing everything right compared to one who has tears of joy because of living in Gods presence? When we ask for Gods blessings, we are fixing our eyes on Him and away from ourselves and the job at hand.

Receiving Gods goodness, mercy, and joy by letting Him bless us, is the only way we can lead other people there. What a wonder and indescribable blessing it is to serve a God who tells us to delight in Him, for He delights in us (Ps. 194: 2, 4)!

I would like to close this article with part of a poem from John Piper's book, "Desiring God." It goes like this:

His goodness shines with brightest rays
When we delight in all His ways.
His Glory overflows it's rim
When we are satisfied in Him
His radiance will fill the earth
When people revel in His worth.
The beauty of Gods holy fire
Burns brightest in the hearts desire.

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