WORSHIP IN THE DARK
We are tempted to quickly believe God changes when trouble
comes our way. This is not only false, it is short sighted. Since
the Creator has no beginning or end, and since he cannot lie, he
is (to quote the writer of Hebrews) the "same, yesterday, today,
(Hebrews 13:8) This is important for us to understand, since
Christians are not exempt from difficulties. While we live in this
flesh and on this earth, it rains on both the sinner and the saint.
Unfortunately, when troubles come, the first reaction can be to
doubt the Creator. "Why would God let that happen?" Yes, it's
true. God gets a bad rap. But, God has promised us that he
always remains loving, kind, and great in patience. Even when
he comes in the final judgement, he will still remain loving, kind,
God does not change. Therefore, worship is due him, even when
we are in the dark places of our lives. Unfortunately, the Enemy
of our souls wants to divert our attention so that we focus on the
problem, instead of on Almighty God. But, we are not the only
ones who have experienced this tug-of-war. Four men in the
Bible are great examples to us: King David, Job, Paul, and
Silas. After horrendous problems hit them, they worshiped God.
King David's child died even after he fasted and prayed (2
Samuel 12) Instead of making a complaint to God or doubting
God, David worshiped (2 Samuel 12:20) His focus on who God
was, even while fasting, helped him to keep a clear head. When
asked why he suddenly rallied and went to worship God, he said
about his son, very logically I might add, "Can I bring him back
again? I will go to him, but he will not return to me." (2 Samuel
It can be argued that no one went through more than Job. He
lost his family (except for his wife), his wealth, and even his
health. His loses make most people's problems seem minor, yet
he worshiped (Job 1:20) "Through all this Job did not sin nor did
he blame God (Job 1:22) He decided to trust God in a very dark
And who can forget the prison scene with Paul and Silas?
Mercilessly beaten and shackled in a dark and filthy prison, they
lifted their voices in praise to God (Acts 16:22-26) In this case,
the prison was shaken and they and the other prisoners found
themselves liberated from the hold of the jail.
What was it that these men actually did? The looked toward the
light in the midst of the darkness. That Light is God.
Let me illustrate it this way: If I go into a dark room, I will flip
the switch to light the room. The worship of our gracious Lord is,
in essence, flipping on the switch. It is bringing to our lives the
truth of who God is, no matter what. I could go into the same
room and struggle in the dark. I could cry and stumble around,
saying things like, "God, why did you let this happen?" or I could
flip the switch. That is exactly what we do when we begin to
express who God is, even when things look dark.
The Apostle Paul made a powerful statement that we must
remember when bad things happen. "I count all things to be loss
in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord,
for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them
but rubbish so that I may gain Christ." (Philippians 3:8)
We can worship God in the dark.
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