worship 3Enter into His gates with thanksgiving, And into His courts with praise. Be thankful to Him, and bless His name. (Psalms 100:4 NKJV)

We’ve probably all heard this verse or even sung it in Sunday School as kids. What a simple yet profound instruction: this is how you get into the presence of God Almighty, who has provided a way for us to meet with Him face to face. Be thankful…praise Him…bless His Name, and you might just find yourself front and center with the Throne, face to face with the King of Kings.

While this is a worthy goal of our worship, to enter in and just experience His Presence, to give Him the glory that He deserves, I think that there is something more.

There are so many things about God that I don’t fully comprehend. There is so much of His awesomeness that I’ve yet to grasp. But I do know one thing:  There’s always more.

In Old Testament times seeking an audience with the king meant taking your life in your own hands, or more accurately, putting it in the King’s.  If you wanted to enter into the King’s presence, you would come in, kneel before the throne, and wait. In the few seconds that I’m sure felt like an eternity, the King would either raise his scepter, a signal that permission was granted to approach, or leave it down, at which point you would be taken away and promptly escorted to your own execution.

Thankfully we don’t serve a King like that. We serve a King that gave up everything He had to give so that we could come before Him–boldly, with confidence, accepted–as his kids.  But you know, because He’s made a way to freely come, I think sometimes we have a tendency to lose the reverence, lose the awe of the encounter.  We come in, not focused on meeting with the King, but thinking about our last fight with our spouse, or lunch plans, or whatever. And guess what–we’re human. We’re called sheep numerous times in the Bible, and I don’t think it was a compliment. So I’m not here to send anyone on a guilt trip.  If so, I’d need to be the first to pack my bags.

But think back to that Old Testament picture. Someone seeking an audience with the king had a pretty important matter to discuss. He must have had a worthwhile case to plead; one worth risking everything in the hope that the king would intervene.  And I bet you my last dollar, he came in knowing what he was going to say.

A while back a friend of mine was diagnosed with cancer. It came as quite a shock as she was a young mom who was vibrant and healthy. The Sunday following that news, my worship took on a whole new meaning. I had decided I was going to fight for her with everything I had. Those weren’t just songs that morning, they were weapons. They were launch pads for faith to be unleashed.  I had the enemy in my crosshairs.  It was an incredible time of worship!

It might not be a friend with cancer.  It might be a lost family member, or a marriage on the rocks, or a physical illness, but we ALL have circumstances in our lives where we need the King to intervene. We all have places that are totally beyond our control (and probably more than we care to admit!) And we all have instructions for coming face to face with the King. Enter His gates with thanksgiving, and His courts with praise. Give thanks, bless His Name, enter boldly. But then what?

Worship is a powerful mixture of Spirit and Truth. When we align our hearts with the truth of God’s Word, something happens. Faith happens. When that faith is focused on a specific target, it paves the way for the miraculous. And when we get to that face to face place, let’s not take it for granted. Let’s know why we came. Let’s ask the King to act and see if He doesn’t delight to respond.

This post was written by Becca Wilhite. To read more about her, click here