Life As Worship
I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Romans 12:1
We often say that God created man for worship, but that’s probably not the best way to say it. It’s probably more accurate to say that God created man worshiping. We are worshiping beings, constantly and consistently giving our loyalty and lives to someone or something. In that one or thing we find our dignity, our value, and our worth—we look to it to tell us that we’re good enough, that we’re worthy enough, and that our lives matter. In exchange, we give that one or thing all that we are and all that we have. We vest our hopes, our dreams, and our futures in it. We give our time and our finances to it. In short, it takes its place on the throne of our lives.
God created us so that He would be at the center of our lives, that in Him we would live and move and have our being (Acts 17:28). He created us so that we would be in perfect relationship with Him, and we would have no spiritual or emotional need apart from Him.
Sin changed all of that. Now we look to other people and other things to tell us we are good enough, that we matter. In them we place our identity. It may be sports. It may be our spouses or our children. For our students, it may be their friends or their schoolwork. Rather than rejoicing and resting in who they are in Christ, they may find their identity in being “the athlete” or the “good student” or “the cute one” or “the artsy one”. While celebrating and being grateful for the gifts and talents that God has given others and us is a good thing, when they become the source of our identity, when we look to them to give us meaning in our lives, we are idolaters. Everyone is guilty of idolatry, and whatever is that person or thing is in whom we place our allegiance, in the end it’s actually our own selfish pride, our own desire to control our lives, to be the center of our universe.
As followers of Christ, we are called to be God-worshipers, to be restored to that rightful state of being in pure, good and holy relationship with God. As a school, we will continuously and constantly submit everything that we do- whether it be a student’s performance on the field, a teacher’s lesson in the classroom, or a difficult conversation between principal and parent- to our God as an act of worship. As a school, we will declare the worthiness of God to be praised, and acknowledge His place as the Lord of our lives and the center of the universe. This school, our studies, our performances, our gifts, talents, and resources, are our sacrifices that we will lay daily before Him, for His use and His purposes. Our entire lives and this entire school are entirely at His disposal.
It is often said that part of the problem with a “living sacrifice” is that it keeps trying to crawl off of the altar. We recognize that we struggle with the flesh, that living “life as worship” will result in mistakes and sin, and that we’ll need to seek forgiveness from our Lord and from each other. We call upon the power of the Holy Spirit to enable us to live “life as worship”, and on the blood of Jesus to give us grace when we fail.