Page memorial UMC
P.O. Box 695, 115 W. Main Street, Aberdeen, NC 28315   |   910.944.1093
Page memorial UMC
Pastor's Sermon
TEXT: PSALM 100:1-5.

Blessed assurance, Jesus us mine! O what a foretaste of glory divine!
Heir of salvation, purchase of God, born of His Spirit, washed in His blood.
This is my story, this is my song, praising my Savior all the day long.
This is my story, this is my song, praising my Savior all the day long.

You can’t sing this hymn or any other with a sincere heart and not connect with Heaven. We enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with our praise. Our worship invites us into His presence and He into our hearts.

WHY WE WORSHIP

People often ask, “Why do we need to worship?” People who have never experienced God’s dynamic presence in worship and how it tunes your heart to Him believe that worship must be a “waste of time” or “boring”. Here are some facts to consider.

When you enter worship… You set yourself up to let God’s peace fill you.

THE HEBREW WORD: “SHALOM”=Peace

Ex. We come to Praise God, to center our lives in Him, to focus away from self. When we do this the result is we align our lives with God and we have His peace fill us. To worship is to recognize God is worthy of our praise because of who He is. There is no one like Him who cares for each of us, and wants to put His strength and love within us. It is people who live focused on themselves who live worried, doubtful, angry, hesitating, depressed lives, because they never know the joy of letting God fill them. Instead the world is what fills them and it can’t give them anything to fill that God shaped hole inside them.

*But Christians have PEACE because we KNOW WHO GOD IS! We’ve been in His presence. We lift our hearts up to the “best”, the “highest” we know and the things that trouble us in life shrink to their normal size before God, who is Awesome, and our Creator and Sustainer.
Letting Christ fill our lives gives us peace (John 14:27).

When we worship… We let God give our lives security.

THE HEBREW WORD: “SHALVAH”=Security

The security we find is not that of having a financial fortune or pulling out a Smith and Wesson revolver…Our security means “the ability to enjoy life.”

God gives to those who worship a sense that their life fits in with the Universe He created. For God not only made us (put us together), He puts us together…brings every aspect of our lives under His care until we are able to give thanks for and enjoy the life we have. We begin to count our blessings, we see all the unfettered goodness of God has been poured out for us, and we rejoice as we enjoy life and see what God has done for us.

People living in the world often feel uncertain and insecure without knowing what it means to live in Christ. (Just read Philippians 4:4-20, and see what God promises to believers). Believers trust in the Lord, and in God’s timing.

*We have SECURITY because we KNOW WHAT GOD HAS DONE FOR US! We’ve seen His mighty acts on our behalf! (Psalm 86:8-13). We are learning to trust our walking in Him
(Psalm 23:3, Galatians 5:25).

When we worship God we become aware of the GLORY of HIS PRESENCE.

THE HEBREW WORD: “SHEKINAH”=God’s radiant presence among us!

When the faithful gather…Jesus promised that the whole community would experience God’s love and light. We see God as others come before Him and together we share in the journey which God has given us. The fellowship of the saints…becomes our identity. We know how good it is when we dwell together and God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in time of need (Psalm 46:1). God’s radiance is displayed in the ways we “see” His glory shine among us.

A Story goes like this: A home caught on fire one night. Siren’s blared. Fire trucks rolled. When they arrived, the house was engulfed in flames. A firefighter rushed in. Braving the danger he found a young boy and wrapped him in a blanket. As the roof was about to fall in, he jumped through the flames saving the boy, but burning his hands severely. Later, the sad news was learned that the boy’s parents didn’t make it. So the community came together. There were no relatives. Who would give the boy a new home? A teacher came forward. She could promise the boy a good home and a good education. A banker was next. He could offer many advantages that others couldn’t. And there stood the firefighter. The Mayor said, “Who do you want to belong to?” The boy replied, “I belong to the man with the scars on his hands!

We all belong to the man with the scars on his hands…for Jesus Christ came and faced all kinds of trial to rescue us out of the fire…so we can know we are God’s children (John 1:12, and 1 John 3:1-3). Worship is a constant reminder that God is with us every day in our daily lives. That He cares for us and wants us to grow up in Him for He sent us.
Jesus (John 3:16-17).

The Boy became a firefighter’s son. He learned to be strong, to help people, to be able to sacrifice for the good of others, and to face danger and overcome it. Faith offers us not a dead religion, or a set of empty rules, but a relationship which transforms us. We hear God’s stories, sing God’s songs, discover how to see God at work in His world, and walk in His light. We know the joy of having a heart warmed towards God because we live in it! God manifests His glory to us and we glow with the light of His love!

Ex. They tell a story about Chippie the Parakeet.
Chippie was minding his own business when his owner decided to clean out his cage using a vacuum cleaner. She stuck the nozzle in the cage just as the phone rang. Picking up the phone, she heard a distinct “THUMP” and dropped the receiver, and rushed to the vacuum cleaner to shut it off. She opened the bag fearing the worst, but Chippie has managed to survive. He was stunned now and covered in dust. The woman carried Chippie to the sink where she washed him off. Now Chippie began to shiver from the cold. The lady brought out her blow dryer and blasted Chippie with it. A reporter heard about Chippies ordeal and came by to write a story about it. He asked the woman, “How is your bird doing?” She replied, “Well, he doesn’t sing much anymore. He just sits and stares!” The reporter went back wrote an article entitled, “SUCKED UP, WASHED UP, AND BLOWN OUT!”

Without worship, we become just like Chippie when the world has its way with us. Only a life centered in Christ can give you:

THE SHALOM: Peace. Eternal Peace,

THE SHALVAH: Security. Enjoying Life Security,

THE SHEKINAH: A sense of God’s Radiant Presence and His Glory in Your Life, which you need to overcome and thrive.

SO…This SUNDAY and every SUNDAY…Receive God’s invitation to:
Make a joyful noise to the Lord…Worship the Lord with gladness..Come into His presence with Joyful songs…Know that He is God and that He has made us.. Enter his courts with thanksgiving…Give thanks to Him, blessing His holy name. FOR THE LORD IS GOOD; HIS STEADFAST LOVE ENDURES FOREVER, AND HIS FAITHFULNESS TO ALL GENERATIONS. -Psalm 100

It is your birth rite and God commands us to worship Him for when we set our inmost being to praising God we set our hearts and minds on God’s plan, not our own.
Open Hearts. Open Minds. Open Doors
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