“Christian Hedonism is aware that self-consciousness kills joy and therefore kills worship. As soon as you turn your eyes in on yourself and become conscious of experiencing joy, it is gone . . . the secret of joy is self-forgetfulness. Yes, we go to the art museum for the joy of seeing the paintings. But . . . set your whole attention on the paintings, and not on your emotions, or you will ruin the whole experience. Therefore, in worship there must be a radical orientation on God, not ourselves.”
from Desiring God: Meditations of a Christian Hedonist
by John Piper
Lord, thank you for worship last Sunday. I don’t remember any of the details. I don’t remember any distractions. I don’t remember all the songs we sang, if the praise team sang the “right” notes, if we were in sync, if we blended well, if the congregation was singing with us or even what anyone was wearing. I was oblivious. I remember worshiping you. I remember singing to you, being completely lost in music and praise. I came with the simple offering of my voice and what I received filled me to the extent that there was no room for anything else.
Lord, as I thank you for this blessing, I desperately pray that my worship would never distance me from those we are there to to lead. I pray that they would come with me as I enter into your presence.
O God, you are my God; earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you; my flesh faints for you, as in a dry and weary land where there is no water. So I have looked upon you in the sanctuary, beholding your power and glory. Because your steadfast love is better than life, my lips will praise you. So I will bless you as long as I live; in your name I will lift up my hands.
“May my prayer like incense rise before You, the lifting of my hands a sacrifice . . . So Your Word is my joy and meditation, from the rising to the setting of the sun.
Oh God, You are my God, and I will ever praise You. Oh God, You are my God, and I will ever praise You.”
Like Incense/Sometimes By Step
This was dual published on my Pragmatic Communion blog.