Our Daily Life as Worship
is driving a truck or diapering a baby worship? Yes, if done with a view to pleasing the Lord. Paul wrote the Roman Christians, “Present your bodies a living sacrifice to God, which is your reasonable service” (Romans 12:1). And the word he used for service is one that means worship as well. It occurs in its verbal form in Paul’s speech before Felix: “After the way they call heresy so worship I the God of my fathers” (Acts 24:14).
Our everyday lives are supposed to be presented to God as reasonable (KJV) or spiritual (ASV) worship.
We are prone to think of worship as occurring only in a meeting-house. But the worship of God includes far more than participation in the “five items” on the Lord’s Day. We are encouraged to present our bodies as living sacrifices to God twenty-four hours a day, not three or four hours a week.
The New Testament tells servants to work hard “as to the Lord” (Ephesians 6:7). It tells children to obey their parents “in the Lord” (Ephesians 6:1). It tells Christians to obey the law of the land “for the Lord’s sake” (1 Peter 2:13). As a matter of fact the New Testament tells us that everything the Christian does ought to be done “in the name of the Lord Jesus” and “to the glory of God” (Colossians 3:17; 1 Corinthians 10:31). And this is just another way of saying what Paul has said in our text: “Present your bodies a living sacrifice to God, which is your reasonable” worship!
If we could come to think of our lives as one continuous offering of worship to God I think it would “transform” us into a new people (Romans 12:2). If we could hold before us the New Testament concept of everyday work, and even recreation (Mark 6:31), as worship it would give meaning to activities that might seem like drudgery to us otherwise and help us make wiser choices in our entertainments.
Is driving a truck worship to God? Yes, if done for the Lord’s sake (Ephesians 6:7). You might not like your job, but can you see that it is not the job you have that matters but the attitude you have toward it? There were sixty million slaves in the Roman Empire when the New Testament was written. They were sixty percent of the whole population of the Empire. The hardships to which they were subjected are too many and too terrible to recite here. Many of them probably did not like their jobs, but Paul told them to work “heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men” (Colossians 3:23). Their pitiful painful labors were accepted by the God of heaven as worship because they worked to please Him.
Is diapering a baby worship? Yes, if done for the Lord’s sake. How many mothers today are tempted to turn their children over to daycare centers because they do not understand how noble a mother’s role really is? They are listening to worldlings who do not realize that a mother’s care for her children is worship, “holy, acceptable to God.” A mother wiping her baby’s runny nose is offering worship to God as surely as is the most eloquent preacher delivering the greatest sermon since the Mar’s Hill address, if she is doing it with a view to pleasing the Master.
This concept of everyday activity as worship to God would draw out the best in us. The student who does a second-class job on his algebra homework because he prefers English or a television program does not understand the worship of God. God does not require straight A’s, but He does require the presentation of the student’s whole life as sacrificial worship. That means no short cuts, no goofing off, no cheating. The student who has worked long and hard into the night, with tears, to bring home a D because he or she wanted to do as well as possible for the Lord has presented acceptable worship to God. The student who brings home an A—when it could have been an A + has presented “the lame and the sick for sacrifice” to God and He will not have it (Malachi 1:8).
Our worship of the Eternal God has only begun when we leave our assemblies of worship. All of us, from the judge on his bench to the street cleaner in his appointed gutter, need to thank God that our every deed will be accepted as an act of worship to Him if we have done it in the name of His Son and to His glory. And we need to live each moment of our lives accordingly.