I think I mentioned in my first post on the book “Pure Praise” that I am currently taking an Online Worship Leader Class taught by Dwayne Moore. It’s been an eye-opening experience. I believe God is using this book, this class and all of the worship team at Academy to do a work of renewal in my spirit. As part of the requirements for Dwayne’s class I had to read Dan Dehaan’s book “The God You Can Know.” It really was an outstanding book focusing mainly on the contents of this week’s study from PP. If you found yourself longing to know more about God and His attributes as described in the readings for the week, then I strongly encourage you to go to Amazon and buy “The God You Can Know.” It will challenge and stretch your understanding as well as your response to God.
On page 52 Dwayne writes: As we get to know God through our fellowship with and worship of him, we begin to realize several benefits. Granted, we should worship the Lord simply because he demands, desires, and deserves it. However, there are some fantastic ‘perks’ to loving and knowing our heavenly Father. In The God You Can Know (Moody Publishers, 2001), Dan DeHaan lists several of these benefits. Just try and wrap your mind around this list:”
Here’s the list and some of my thoughts following each one:
- Character Development – As a result of this study, I personally have a renewed interest in my own heart and mind to grow more like God, which requires a renewed commitment to the study of God’s Word and to prayer. Dwayne recommends memorizing 2 Corinthians 3:18. Here’s what it says – “And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.” My goal: people have to wear sunglasses when they look at me because the glory of the Lord is just too bright! (LOL) That comes from being present with God continually.
- Freedom from intimidation – Colossians 2:6-7 talks about Christ-followers being “rooted and built up in [Jesus] and established in the faith.” In my mind I picture the giant redwoods in Northern California. I’ll never forget traveling through there in the summer of 1990 with the Continental Singers. I grew up in the desert of Arizona so I’d never seen anything like it! That’s an image of maturity, strength, and perseverance that I strive for – to be deeply rooted and strengthened in the solid foundation of God’s truth, unintimidated by the storms of this life. As my faith grows, so I grow. Maturity doesn’t come with a degree from college. It comes through perseverance. See James 1:2-4.
- Compassion – With a stronger awareness of God’s character and a deeper longing to follow Him wherever He would lead, we no longer have to “work up a burden” (Moore, p. 52) for those who don’t know God. Instead we become fully aware of God’s heart as a Father to His children, and we naturally get swept up in caring for what He cares about – people and justice.
- True satisfaction in God – Let’s unpack this piece together. Read what Dwayne Moore has to say on page 53: “Too often we begin to depend on our successes or other people’s opinions to fulfill us. More and more we base our contentment on something other than God. It’s no wonder that some people become disillusioned with ministry and fall into affairs or become obsesses with climbing the corporate ladder or drift away from the church.” I certainly don’t think we drift away from God intentionally. It’s a subtle shift, something we think we can contain and control, but it has the potential to ignite a spark that will eventually burn our house down. Coming back to a place of true satisfaction in God is a powerful moment in worship. I’ve witnessed it and I’ve experienced it personally! To be able to sing that our God is more than enough…and mean it. WOW! I believe that one statement would have a monumental effect on the church if it were true. But the question needs to be answered by each of us individually. Is God “more than enough” as evidenced by our attitudes and our actions?
Thanks for going through this study with me. I believe it has the potential to create a seismic impact on our team. May we be OVERWHELMED by our God’s grace, faithfulness, steadfast love, mercy, sovereignty, and so much more. May our worship reflect our encounters with God. May we illumine God as we “shine like stars” to the praise of His glory and grace! Amen.