As I was reading today’s readings, something caught my attention from a book of the Bible that I typically don’t turn to. That’s why it is good to have a plan of reading scripture that isn’t just books or concepts that you like. It’s important to read passages that may confuse you or that you struggle with. God may speak to you in unexpected ways or through unexpected verses.
Today as I was reading, I was struck by something in Revelation, typically a book that I don’t focus much on. My joke is I have to serve a church at least 5 years before I go there, and I’m not quite there 🙂 But actually, Revelation is a great book, a book of hope and of encouragement to a church in desperate need of those things. It is a book of the promise of God’s deliverance, no matter the circumstance. Today when I was reading I really noticed something in Revelation 19: 9-10:
9And the angel said to me, ‘Write this: Blessed are those who are invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb.’ And he said to me, ‘These are true words of God.’ 10Then I fell down at his feet to worship him, but he said to me, ‘You must not do that! I am a fellow-servant with you and your comrades who hold the testimony of Jesus. Worship God! For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.’
As John is seeing all of these different things happen, he is often amazed and overwhelmed by everything that he experiences. In this moment he is so overcome by the words of an angel delivering a message that he falls down to worship the angel, but this is what he says – no. I am a fellow servant. Worship God.
That is a strong point for us all today. There are people we admire and respect. Parents, preachers, leaders, people we follow on social media, folks whose podcast we listen to. People that we can learn much from. People of great faith and vision.
But they are simply fellow servants. Worship God.
As members of the church it is so easy to worship the “stuff” of church or the “people” or church instead of God. It’s easy to worship the preacher. Or the style of worship. Or the way that things look. And hear me, I’m not saying any of this is bad. But what I am saying that none of these things are God. God alone demands our worship.
As leaders in the church, it’s easy to get folks to want to worship up or follow us instead of God. As leaders, it’s our job to make sure that we are following God, so that when people follow us, they aren’t following us, they are following Jesus.
As a leader, I must always know and remind myself of this – it’s not about me. It’s always and only about Jesus.
Today, who do you worship? Do you worship God alone? Do you worship another person? Do you worship a place? Who do you worship? Worship is reserved for God, and God alone.