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The Definition of True Worship

Updated: Sep 1, 2020

Two days ago I was sitting drinking coffee with my lovely wife, discussing the concept of “Worship” when we read it in the pages of the book we are reading together? To be honest, the concept, as well as the practice, seemed to be something I have struggled with perhaps the majority of my adult life, or at least from the time I can say that I have been actively engaged in the arena of at least trying to “follow God.”

What exactly is worship? And while I had the privilege in my own past to play a musical instrument, and be a part of a “worship service” band, I can say that the actual feeling of worship as well as the desire to enter into it, seemed to escape me? Plus reading passages in the Bible where statements are made of people or angels worshiping God for extended periods of time, even weeks or years, not only baffled me but is some cases even scared me, as I contemplated the translations of my own guilt-laden boredom with the mere twenty or thirty minutes I had in church, extending to periods over months if not more?

I went to bed or perhaps relaxed, and as I began to doze off an image came into my head from my own young family life experience, and I felt God may have been answering my own questions, even one I hardly realized I asked? I have an overwhelming feeling to put that image onto the paper after discussing it with Anna this morning.

I was transported and see before me, my own small child Grace as a baby, sitting on the floor in front of me. What was amazing was the image I could see was one where I am looking at the scene from directly behind her and I can at the same time also see myself sitting on the couch off to her right watching her play?

I say I can see myself because I am sort of watching her, and watching myself watch her even as the scene unfolds before me. There is a look on my own face, as I watch my sweet child just sit there playing before me of pure happiness. And while I probably couldn’t do it justice, let’s just say I don’t think I could ever remember myself being that happy as I witness myself at this moment, the look was unmistakable. Perhaps the only word that I could possibly come up with, that could even remotely describe the look on my own face I was witnessing; is utter bliss.

My little daughter cannot be even a year old yet, because she doesn’t seem to be old enough to stand up on her own, but she is sitting unsupported. She is from the vantage point I am observing, now right directly behind her, clearly sitting looking or playing with something in her hands. 

My own eye must have the supernatural ability to simultaneously look from behind her and at the same time, not only see what she is examining in her precious hands but also the look on her face as she examines it? She is just sitting there looking at a simple small rectangular toy, perhaps a small woodblock over and over in her hand as she carefully examines it, studying it,  turning it over, again and again, studying each side as if the new side is suddenly and excitedly new once again.

Her face is one of complete contemplation but also happy and smiling satisfaction as she looks at the block, turns it over, looks at the other side, and then looks at the other side again, studying it and smiling in her thorough happy exam. I think I even softly hear her quiet voice a soft cooing soundly as she again discovers a once again new side.

I am amazed at her complete peacefulness and thoroughness that she places on this simple item, the locking of her gaze, not want to miss a single atom of the precious treasure that has suddenly found its way into her hands.

For a moment she almost seemed to get so enamored by her activity she almost forgot I was there, but suddenly she stops and turns needed to make sure I still was. She stops and looks up to me sitting on the couch next to her, watching her. She gives me a happy satisfied smile, almost as a response, and just as quickly returns her gaze to the object of her attention. Because just as fast she looked at me, she was is right back looking at the block again starting to rotate it around in her hand as she examines one side and then another.

Again my eye goes back to myself sitting on the couch and the look on my own face as I seem to realize myself she is just making sure I am still there, her father, safely watching her as she plays. A wave of personal satisfaction as my own fatherly pride self seems to know what possibly she must have thought, at least realized with the look on his face; “Yep, dad is still there, I am safe, protected, loved, even being watched in interest and smiles.”

Again she suddenly stops, looks again at me on the couch, but this time reaches out with the outstretched arm to show her dad with a giving smile, the block in her hand. Looking up at him and lifting it up, she smiles with such joy and loving participation, wanting me clearly to see, or wishing to show me the wonderful treasure she has just discovered.

I cannot begin to describe the feeling I see on my own face as I look at the wonderful smiling bright loving eyes of my child, reaching up and wanting to share her new discovery with me, her precious treasure. At this moment she is giving me a true experience of life, and love all wrapped up in a single wonderful, yes; “wonder”-“full” wooden block.

This I feel in my heart and realize immediately in my own thoughts; “This Is the Definition of True Worship”

“God loves to watch us experience His gifts He gives us, loves it more when we look to make sure He watching and loves it the most when we reach out and share our wooden blocks with Him.”

Thank You Grace my sweet daughter for that wonderful memory, and thank you God for that fatherly experience.

By Peter Colla

“Dear Lord, help me remember that You, as a Father loves to watch each of us, oh so much more than I could ever begin to. And Lord help me remember to appreciate every gift you give me in this life even the most precious little wooden blocks.”

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