January 26th, 2021 by Sara Buffington
I am about to tell you about one of the most impactful worship experiences of my life. What do you think it was? Can you imagine the scene?
Are you picturing something like this?
Yeah, it wasn’t like that. At all.
It happened during one of the hardest points of my life. I was in a deep depression. After years of trying to have a baby, the doctor had told my husband and me that it just wasn’t going to happen.
We went to the movies after that appointment, and I just sat in the dark and cried through the whole thing. It was an Adam Sandler comedy, of all things.
I was heartbroken. I was angry. I was raw.
Sunday was just a few days later. I was a singer on the worship team, so I had to go to church that day. I was prepared to just get through the morning so I could go back to bed, watch movies, and cry.
Right before the service, the pastor got up to make an announcement. He said, “I just got off the phone with Charlie and Sarah. Sarah had her baby this morning--a beautiful baby girl!”
Sarah was one of my closest friends, but we had drifted apart somewhat since she had become pregnant. We both knew why, and she understood. It was painful for me to be around her.
And when I heard that announcement, I started to cry.
I just melted.
I was happy for her and Charlie. I really was. But all I could think was, “That will never be me.”
The music started. I tried to sing. I would get some notes out, and then I would choke up with tears. I don’t remember a single thing about what I sang that morning. But I remember what I was thinking.
I said to God, “I don’t feel like you are good. It doesn’t seem like you are good to me, although you are good to other people.”
And I knew I was at a crossroads. I just knew it, deep in the hollows of my chest.
I knew I had to decide.
Did I want to choose God, choose to believe he was good even though the evidence in my life seemed to point to the contrary, or did I want to walk away?
I thought about it. And I decided.
I decided to stick with him. I decided to bet all my chips on him. Maybe it was smart, maybe it was dumb--I remember thinking that--but I decided.
And then, I worshipped. I still don’t think much sound came out.
I didn’t look good. I didn’t sound good. But that was it--a turning point in my life.
I chose ten stories from the Bible about people worshipping. They are not what you would expect. They don’t all involve music. Some don’t even involve words.
But they all involve this definition of worship from Darlene Zschech: “Worship is worth-ship. It is giving God his due worth.”
When you think about it like that, almost anything can be an act of worship. And it can be in the middle of life’s toughest moments.
Want to join me? Read or listen to this five or ten-day plan on the Dwell app. The subscription is a free gift from New Covenant. Once you sign up, you can access the plan.
Each day's reading/audio is about five minutes. We’ll have a Zoom meeting to talk about our reactions, realizations, and questions. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to sign up.