Worshipping at All Times
There are days I do not feel like worshiping the Lord due to the circumstances I am facing. Sometimes the difficulties of life wear me down and I take my eyes off my Saviour. Yet the Lord will gently break through to my heart at such times and draw me back to the place of worship and thanksgiving. He often does it simply by the sound of His voice speaking to my heart; other times He may use a song or the words of a fellow believer to return my focus to His goodness. When this happens, I am reminded that I ought to be worshiping at all times, even when I do not feel like it. Those are the times when it really is a "sacrifice of praise", because it means laying down my desire to dwell in my disgruntled state and giving God glory in spite of my circumstances. It is declaring He is good at all times through my words, actions, attitudes, and thoughts. Worship is not just singing songs, though songs of praise and adoration to our King are an intricate part of worship. How I live and respond to life is also a means of worshiping Jesus. He is deserving of all honor. If I say that He has first place and is King of my life, but I turn around and have a sour attitude over something He permits to happen to me, I am not worshiping Him. I am worshiping my own understanding and giving it precedence over Him. My response ought to be one of saying, "Lord, though I do not understand, I choose to give You glory. Thank-you for being here with me in all circumstances. Your will be done." Bowing my will down to His is a powerful act of worship.
My living righteously by the power of the Holy Spirit is another beautiful way to worship the Lord. It shows His glory to the world around me and brings Him honor. Instead of thinking of doing what is right in His sight as my "duty" as a believer, I must think of it as worship. I desire to live my life in such a way as to show my love and adoration for my Saviour. I fail and fall short many times, but when I do walk in righteousness, my life takes on a new dimension as a living, breathing act of worship. "Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship." (Romans 12:1, NASB) "Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father." (Colossians 3:17, NASB)
Finally, I must always ask myself whether I am worshiping Him with my time. This is both in serving others and sitting at His feet. I think many times it is easier, at least for me, to serve someone else in His name because I appear to be doing something "worthwhile" with my time in the eyes of others. The sitting at His feet is mostly a hidden thing, and my flesh can think of ten "more productive" things to be doing at the moment than spending time with the Lord. Saying that I spent an hour at an inner-city mission volunteering sounds better than saying I spent an hour praying and listening to what the Lord wanted to say to me. (Not to say that time serving is not well-spent -- please do not hear me implying that!) The truth is I will never get to a place of worshiping Him at all times and in all things if I cannot worship Him in the secret place where no one else can see me. My favorite times during the day should be those moments when I make time to just be with Him. A heart of worship starts in enjoying His presence and glorying in just Who He is. What we give to Him and receive from His heart in that time is so very important. It reminds me of what Jesus said to Martha after she protested to Him over Mary sitting at His feet instead of helping her: "Martha, Martha, you are worried and bothered about so many things; but only one thing is necessary, for Mary has chosen the good part, which shall not be taken away from her." (Luke 10:41b-42, NASB). I want that good part that will not be taken away from me. I want my life to show that I spend time in the presence of Jesus. I want the world to see me worshiping Him at all times.