Show me Your glory, I pray.
Then the LORD said to Moses, “Go to Pharaoh and say to him,
‘Thus says the LORD: Let my people go, so that they may worship me.’”
When do you feel most alive? It is likely when you are fulfilling the purpose for which God made you: to worship. It is built into our nature to worship God, and when we don’t worship Him, we end up worshipping something less than God. There is great wisdom in the first question and answer of the old catechism:
Question: What is the chief end of man?
Answer: Man’s chief end is to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever.
God created us in His image so that the purpose for our lives is bound up in Him. An all-sufficient God did not need us, but He does want us to love Him, walk with Him, share life with Him, and delight His heart. The whole text and tenor of Scripture is worship, with all human history hastening towards the goal of all creation worshipping God. When the book of Revelation pulls back the curtain on worship we see all creatures worshipping. We are hardwired to worship God, so that we grow and flourish as we worship. It is not God who needs our worship, but we who need to worship.
The Exodus story tells about being set free from things that enslave us so that we might worship God. It is helpful in understanding the Exodus to know that in today’s scripture the Hebrew word (avodah) translated “worship” is the word used for the crushing “servitude” of Pharaoh (Exodus 5:18). People either worship God or find themselves worshipping and enslaved by that which is less than God. The Hebrew avodah means either freedom or slavery, bondage or liberation, Egypt or Exodus. It is always good to ask oneself: “Who or what am I serving?”
God sets people free from bondage, chains, and addictions so they can worship God “whose service is perfect freedom” (The Book of Common Prayer). God sets us free not to live for ourselves, but to live for the One who is infinite goodness, beauty, and truth. This is the Exodus story!
- What are some moments you most feel God’s presence and want to worship? In what moments do you most enjoy Him? Is it in reading the Bible, walking in nature, listening to music, praying, serving others? Whatever it is, why not take some time today to do that which most makes God’s presence real to you!