I am a worship leader and in my head, I understand what it means to worship. I understand that it’s not just singing and lifting our hands on Sunday mornings and that true worship is a matter of the heart. I think Webster’s dictionary nailed it, “Worship is to honor with extravagant love and extreme submission.” Recently I heard a message at my church about it and I was so convicted that I was moved to tears at the thought of how short my life falls of true worship of the Lord. Yet each time this happens, I don’t really feel like much changes. I get it in my head, but I still can’t seem to get to the place that I know I’m honoring the Lord with extravagant love and extreme submission.
Usually, when I get up to lead worship, I am distracted by thoughts about how I look, how my voice sounds, if my arms look fat when I raise them. Off the stage, I am convinced that the reason I am still unwed at the age of 32 is due to my physical appearance. I am concerned with how my hair, makeup, and clothes look, if my house is clean and organized enough, that I’m not doing a good enough job at school or work or let’s be honest – life. I want to be consumed with worship in my life and on stage. But the only time I really ever feel free to worship without those concerns is in the shower when I am literally naked. It is always such a special time – there is no-one else around – just me and the Lord and for a few minutes, my fat rolls and stretch marks don’t matter; I am exposed and unashamed and I am able to truly express my reverence and adoration for God.
Why am I most comfortable worshipping when I’m naked? I don’t think it is just because I am alone with God, although that also makes for some wonderful worship experiences driving down the road in my car or just at home alone dancing and singing before Him. But no worship experience matches those during shower time. It occurs to me that Adam and Eve were unclothed and unashamed before God until they sinned. Even then, God didn’t tell them they were naked and they were ashamed before they even knew that God knew what they had done. The Bible says God made garments of the skins of animals to clothe them. What stands out to me is that God did not inflict shame on them, on the contrary Adam and Eve stood naked before God after they had sinned against Him and instead of turning away from them or walking away disgusted by their flawed nakedness, He sacrificed a part of His own precious creation to clothe them so that they would not feel ashamed.
In Psalm 139, David shares with us just how much God knows about and sees of us, to put it simply – everything. Before He even knit us together in our mother’s womb, he saw what we would be in our nakedness, he saw that we would be flawed and that we would need garments to cover our imperfections, and He sacrificed His very own Son so that we could be dressed in righteousness and unashamed. He doesn’t want us to be ashamed. As His children, He doesn’t even see us as shameful any more.
There is no-one else that would accept me that way, call me lovely and flawless, even in my nakedness and I can’t help but express reverence and adoration for someone that loves me that much! Today, I want you to remember that shame hinders us from true worship and that shame does not come from God. If you want to really express reverence and adoration for God, stand before Him knowing that in your nakedness you are spotless, flawless, and righteous.
Read: Psalm 139
Take your phone in the bathroom with you and listen to today’s song as you shower. Lift your arms in worship as you stand unclothed and unashamed before the one who shed His very own blood to clothe you in His righteousness.