Emotions and Worship
Featuring Branon Dempsey Posted on July 9, 2009
It is amazing to comprehend how God has put us together. We are complex people with complex emotions. When we read the Bible we see a wide range of emotions that are experienced in the lives of Moses, David, Job, Jesus, the apostles, as well as the commoners, blind and crippled. Just the same, we experience sadness, joy, tears and laughter in our daily lives. God built us with emotions as a response mechanism. In the right context, it is healthy to release our emotions rather than to explode or implode them. We see the damaging effects when our emotions are mishandled. However, turning our emotions over to the Lord can have a significant effect in our relationships. Even more so, God is able to guide our emotions that deepen our walk and worship in Him.
Moses inquires of the Lord in how to live rightly, "Moses quickly bowed to the ground and worshiped and said, "If now I have found favor in your sight, O Lord, let my Lord go among us, for we are a stiff-necked people; pardon our iniquity and our sin, and take us for your inheritance." (Ex. 34.8-9)
David is in deep anguish, "Why are you depressed, O my soul? Why are you upset?Wait for God! For I will again give thanks to my God for his saving intervention." (Ps. 42.5)
The blind and the crowd responds to the Lord's healing power, "Immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus, praising God. When all the people saw it, they also praised God. (Lk. 18.43)
Jesus laments over the death of Lazarus, ""Where have you laid him?" he asked. "Come and see, Lord," they replied. Jesus wept." - Jn. 11.34-35
Paul cries out to the Lord for relief, "But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." (2Cor. 12.9)
When is the last time that you uttered or cried out to God in any of these expressions? Really. The Lord has a loving way in guiding our emotions as we respond to Him. This in itself is an act of worship. When we biblically examine our emotions, we find our need for God. He desires to hear our deepest needs as he directs our spirits to His will. We find that we are accepted, loved and known. We experience the wonderful work of his healing and comfort. As we are filled with consolation and/or joy, we respond back to God in praise.
Releasing our sorrow, pain as well as our delight and thrill, enables us to see God in an intimate and broader context. He reveals Himself as the loving Father, the merciful Savior and the Wonderful Counselor. Our understanding of God is enlightened when we see Him beyond our typical songs and ceremonies. In fact, our worship is transformed into a lifestyle of praise and honesty. When we view God standing over us in our daily lives, we witness His warmth and consolation. In Him, our worship and relationship grows deeper until the Day that we are joined with him forever.