Made to Worship - A Message for the New Year

I was listening to a beautiful song by the group Hillsong United called, “So Will I (100 Billion X),” and a line of the song jumped out at me. I have put the lyrics to this song at the end of the blog so you can enjoy its truths also. 

As I meditated on the line, “If the stars were made to worship, so will I,” I was reminded of a passage of Scripture in Revelation 5:11-13. Many Messianic congregations use these verses as part of their Shabbat liturgy. Some of you may not be aware that Jewish liturgy has a lot of responsive reading. For instance, the leader will say “Blessed is the Lord” and the people will respond “Blessed is the Lord, forever and ever!” This is much like the Christian responsive, “God is good,” “All the time,” “And all the time,” “God is good!” 

Well Revelation 5:11-13 is responsive also… 

“Then I looked, and I heard the voice of many angels around the throne, the living creatures, and the elders; and the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands, saying with a loud voice: ‘Worthy is the Lamb who was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom, and strength and honor and glory and blessing!’ 

And every creature which is in heaven and on the earth and under the earth and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, I heard saying: ‘Blessing and honor and glory and power be to Him who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb, forever and ever!’” 

This portion of Scripture always captivates me…the thought of EVERY creature paying homage to our Messiah! There are no exceptions EVERY creature in heaven and on the earth and under the earth and in the sea, ALL giving praise and glory to our Lord! This is an amazing, awe-filled thought! Have you ever wondered what a blue whale praising Messiah looks and sounds like? Have you ever wondered what a hippopotamus, or humming bird, or eagle or shark look and sound like when praising our Lord! EVERY creature gives the Lord His due, so as the song says, “If the stars were made to worship, so will I!”   

I don’t know about you but this sounds like an amazing opportunity! Who wouldn’t want to join the angels, elders and living creature’s invocation to worship alongside EVERY living being? It seems obvious that the answer should be a resounding, “Yes!” but in case you haven’t noticed, humans are the ONLY creatures that often say, “No” and rather chose to live in constant rebellion. Not all of us, at all times, of course, but each of us at one time or another has refused to “respond” and answer the call to worship. 

A friend of mine told me a personal story once, of when she was just 14 years old and God was inviting her to worship in the dance. When she was younger, my friend was very excited to dance before the Lord, but now that she was older and at that stage where she was very self-conscious of people looking at her (a stage we sadly don’t grow out of), she stayed clapping and singing in the back row, as usual. The next service came, and the next, and the next…each time with further pressing from the Lord. Each time she refused, trying to convince herself, and the Lord, that she was worshipping by singing and clapping, and that that should be enough. True worship, however, is rooted in obedience, a lesson my friend would soon learn. 

After one service my friend was asked by a former schoolmate to help her sell her last few candy bars for a fundraiser. Being a good friend, she agreed to help. She managed to get rid of most of the candy bars but she had just two left and there were very few people left to sell them to. Finally, she stopped at one of the dance team members and asked him if he would contribute. His answer shocked her. He said, “Sure, I would be happy to buy your candy bars. For each candy bar I buy, you have to come up and do one dance.” “Oy,” she thought, “What to do!” My friend was in a dilemma. She would have to choose, help her friend or cling to her pride. It never ceases to amaze me how God knows exactly which buttons to press. God knew my friend’s self-sacrificing character would win out…and as such she chose her friend. Well, next week came and it was time to pay up…so with trepidation she joined the other worshippers in the dance. No sooner had the song finished, that she felt an immense weight lift from her shoulders! It was so heavy that she couldn’t even believe that she had carried it so long without even noticing! It was at that moment that she realized, the weight she carried was her own disobedience! God wanted to make her free in worship, and through her example, set others free as well. My friend would go on to join that dance ministry, and eventually lead dance ministries in other congregations. 

The moral of this story is not that it is easy to be obedient, because it comes at a cost, often our pride. The moral is that the enemy wants to keep us weighed down so we don’t respond to the call to worship. We were made to worship! There is no getting around that. It is our purpose, and our destiny to reveal our Messiah in all that we do. We need to stop convincing, or rather lying, to ourselves and to the Lord, that our restrained, restricted, half-hearted worship is acceptable. It is not! 

God wants all of us, not some of us! He wants us to know the value of His sacrifice and to proclaim it openly, no matter who is watching, listening, or judging. This is never easy as we all have allowed the devil to label us…well I’m not a good singer…well I have two left feet…well…I remind people all time that God didn’t say, “If you are worthy, worship Me,” He just said, “Worship Me.” 

As we begin this New Year, we each have a choice to make. Will this year be a year of obedience and blessing, of proclaiming freedom to the captives, or heavy burdens, fear and pride, and lack luster praise…I don’t know about you, but I know, “If the stars were made to worship, so will I.”

So Will I (100 Billion X) 

Hillsong United 

God of creation 
There at the start 
Before the beginning of time 
With no point of reference 
You spoke to the dark 
And fleshed out the wonder of light 

And as You speak 
A hundred billion galaxies are born 
In the vapor of Your breath the planets form 
If the stars were made to worship so will I 
I can see Your heart in everything You’ve made 
Every burning star 
A signal fire of grace 
If creation sings Your praises so will I 

God of Your promise 
You don’t speak in vain 
No syllable empty or void 
For once You have spoken 
All nature and science 
Follow the sound of Your voice 

And as You speak 
A hundred billion creatures catch Your breath 
Evolving in pursuit of what You said 
If it all reveals Your nature so will I 
I can see Your heart in everything You say 
Every painted sky 
A canvas of Your grace 
If creation still obeys You so will I 
So will I 
So will I 

If the stars were made to worship so will I 
If the mountains bow in reverence so will I 
If the oceans roar Your greatness so will I 
For if everything exists to lift You high so will I 
If the wind goes where You send it so will I 
If the rocks cry out in silence so will I 
If the sum of all our praises still falls shy 
Then we’ll sing again a hundred billion times 

God of salvation 
You chased down my heart 
Through all of my failure and pride 
On a hill You created 
The light of the world 
Abandoned in darkness to die 

And as You speak 
A hundred billion failures disappear 
Where You lost Your life so I could find it here 
If You left the grave behind You so will I 
I can see Your heart in everything You’ve done 
Every part designed in a work of art called love 
If You gladly chose surrender so will I 
I can see Your heart 
Eight billion different ways 
Every precious one 
A child You died to save 
If You gave Your life to love them so will I 

Like You would again a hundred billion times 
But what measure could amount to Your desire 
You’re the One who never leaves the one behind 

Songwriters: Joel Houston / Benjamin Hastings / Michael Fatkin 

So Will I (100 Billion X) lyrics © Capitol Christian Music Group