Recently I read an article about a husky dog named Miley who was living — or perhaps I should say barely surviving — in a trash dump somewhere near Los Angeles.
When a rescue worker found her, she could barely lift her head, her body riddled with infections and disease. The rescuer realized that Miley would die a painful death if she stayed in this situation, so his first step was to gain the dog’s trust and confidence. Despite deplorable conditions and filth, the merciful rescuer sat down with Miley for several hours there in the dump.
Eventually he gained Miley’s trust and was able to coax her into his car and get her to the vet and on the road to recovery.
After several days of rest and medical attention, Miley finally had enough energy to offer grateful kisses to her kind rescuer. Now maybe you're wondering what in the world a story about a dog is doing in a blog about worship?
Actually, it’s a rather interesting correlation. One of the Greek words for “worship” is proskuneo, which means to kiss. It is most likely derived from the word kuon, meaning “dog.” The term proskuneo reflects the image of a dog licking its master’s hand. How precious to picture Miley gratefully licking the hand of her rescuer! Yet our story of salvation is not too different than Miley’s.
We couldn’t save ourselves, but God in His kindness sent Jesus.
I picture Miley’s rescuer sitting there in the dump with her, and I think about Jesus who left His heavenly throne to come to this earth and live among us. The Bible says that once we were dead in our sins, but now we have been made alive in Christ. He rescued us and cleansed us. Our response through worship should be as sweet and endearing as Miley licking her rescuer’s hand in gratitude and honor.
What a unique and interesting way to understand worship. Worship is an attitude of the heart and at its very core is a deep respect, reverence, and gratitude for who God is and what He has done for us. Worship honors God’s glory and rejoices in His kindness toward us.
In my own life, I have seen God calm my fears and set my heart at rest when I praise and worship Him in the midst of my challenges. My friend, I want to encourage you, when you are riddled with thoughts of fear or despair, turn your eyes upward and begin praising God for who He is and what He is able to do. Allow your heart to worship Him. Praise Him for His love and mercy. Praise Him that He is your mighty rescuer, your redeemer and He is able to care for your needs.
How has the heart of worship made a difference in your life?