I was on the phone with a friend of mine last night and in the course of the conversation we began to read from Luke 19. We had been talking about worship and the different ways that we were being called into a deeper understanding of what it means to cry out to God and sing praises to Him. My mind was immediately drawn to Luke 19:37-40 which says:
“When he came near the place where the road goes down the Mount of Olives, the whole crowd of disciples began joyfully to praise God in loud voices for all the miracles they had seen:
‘Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!’
‘Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!’
Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Jesus, ‘Teacher, rebuke your disciples!’
‘I tell you,’ he replied, ‘if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out.’”
The thing that stands out to me about this passage is the absolute necessity of God’s creation to worship Him. How great and mighty is our God that His very existence demands the worship of everything that lives and does not live, breathes and does not breathe. In Israel, stones are a dime a dozen; they are everywhere! Jesus said that if His followers were to cease their worship, the common and unimportant rocks would burst forth in adoration, doing what they were created to do: bring glory to their Creator. How much more are we called to do the same?
What also struck me is that all of this praise on this hill called the Mount of Olives occurred at the same place that less than a week later would witness the betrayal of Jesus into the hands of His executors. In Luke 22:39, Scripture says that the Mount of Olives was a “usual” place to which Jesus went to be with His Father; a place of rest and safety. It was in this place and nowhere else that Jesus sweat drops of blood in agony as He prayed, knowing all that was ahead of Him. It was there the same disciples who were singing His praises kept falling asleep on the most painful night in prayer that Jesus had ever had. It was a hill that saw many deep moments of joy as well as sorrow. However, through every season of emotion and struggle, Jesus understood the concept of living every moment in worship.
What is worship? It is the attitude of my spirit on its knees before God, every moment and through every circumstance that comes my way. It may be a wondrous time of praising God with many others, or it may be a time when I find myself all alone, crying out in agony to God about all that is to come. However, through it all my heart will stay true in submission to His will, whatever that may be. I may witness betrayal into the hands of my enemies by those I love and have served alongside for years. My Mount of Olives will see many a joy and many a sorrow. However, I cannot cease praising Him, or the rocks will cry out in my place, for Creation must bring its Creator glory. It must worship Him continually.
I want to discover more each day what it means to worship Him with everything in my life, big or small. I want to bring Him glory as I proclaim His goodness. I will not give the rocks a reason to shout. I will glorify His name!