Words from the Heart for Saturday July 22nd, 2017
Oh, worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness! Tremble before Him, all the earth.
Psalm 96:9 (NKJV)
Worship the Lord in the Beauty of Holiness
Worshipping the Lord requires something of us. We are not worshipping a God like us. Instead, He calls us to be like Him. When we come “close” to the Lord let us ask Him to show us anything and everything displeasing to Him. He is waiting to cleanse and free us from our sins. He has amazing grace for His followers and will lead us to forsake our sin. Ask Him for that wonderful cleansing today.
St. Joseph’s Oratory in Montreal is Canada’s largest church and is the twenty-seventh largest church in the world. Construction began in 1904 on a small chapel on the slopes of Mount Royal near Notre Dame College. The congregation soon outgrew the small chapel and in 1917 a larger church was built that seated 1000 congregants. In 1924 the construction of the basilica of Saint Joseph’s Oratory commenced. It took 43 years to complete. The dome on the Oratory is the third largest of its kind in the world, only smaller than the Basilica of Our Lady of Peace in Yamoussoukro in Cote d’Ivoir and Saint Peter’s Basilica in Rome. In 2004, on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the construction of the original chapel, the Oratory was designated a National Historic Site.
While many church buildings today are built for functionality, traditional church buildings were built to give a sense of awe and worship. I have visited many of these cathedrals and churches and the most common response upon entering is “wow!” While a building is helpful to gain a sense of awe in the Lord’s presence, it is the Lord Himself who ought to cause our greatest sense of magnificence. Psalm 96:9 speaks to this: “Oh, worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness! Tremble before Him, all the earth.” This verse was on the front of many of the buildings where we worshipped in the denomination I was a member of for many years. The buildings themselves were far from awe inspiring. Many were as simple a worship space as exists in the Christian church. But in the worship there was often a sense of awe because the Lord’s presence was manifested powerfully in that place. Worship is ultimately not a physical thing, although physical things can help in drawing us into God’s presence. Worship is a heart thing, and comes out of a sense of God’s presence in our midst. God is holy and those who worship Him must do so recognizing His holiness and our unworthiness. When we worship like that, we will see Him in His power and holiness. And as He touches our lives, and cleanses us, we will truly worship Him in the beauty of holiness.
These have been words from the heart.