John 4:23 (New King James Version)
"But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him."
Over the years I have had many people watch my dogs interact with me and then comment, “Look how much they adore you!”, to which I'd reply, jokingly, “Oh yes, they worship me!”. Little did I realize how much this casual comment would later teach me.
My husband recently shared with me the definition of the Bible’s Greek word for “worship”. The first definition listed in Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance for the word “worship” is this: to kiss, as a dog licking his master’s hand. Oh my!! I immediately thought of my dogs and all their licking. They really DO worship me!! And, they are not content with just a lick of the hand, but they must get to my face too! As I thought more about this newly discovered definition of worship, I began to ask myself the question: Why DO my dogs insist on licking me?
I believe my dogs lick me, first and foremost, as an act of reverence. My dogs think I am GREAT! Not great as in “she’s really cool”, but great as in all powerful, all wonderful, all mighty, all magnificent. There is no one and no thing bigger in their eyes than me. I also believe my dogs lick me out of a heart of thanksgiving for who I am to them – their provider, their protector, their good master. I suppose some would say all this “worship” could make one into an egomaniac. I have to be honest, it does feel good to know the love I have given has been accepted…and reciprocated, even through their simple expression of “worship”, the licking of my hand.
John 4:23 says GOD is seeking true worshipers to worship Him. Are we “worshipers”? What kind of “worship” do we give our Good Master? Do we “drive through” once a week, wave hello from a distance, sing a quick song, recite a few memorized prayers, eat a cracker, and tell him on our rush out, “See ya next week!”? Or, if we do actually make time to approach Him, do we stay only long enough to dump our problems so we can hurry off to make more? Do we really believe He is bigger than our problems anyway? What if we really did start to see Him and experience Him for who He truly is and who He wants to be in our life? What if we made the time to sit at His feet and simply awe at the GREATNESS of His power, His wonder, His might, and His magnificence? Can our heart purpose to be thankful for all He is to us - our provider, our protector, our good and loving Master? Do we approach His hand with boldness and confidence and trust, or do we approach His hand as a dog approaches the hand of a stranger, cautious and distrusting?
Lord, let us purpose to know you as our GOOD Master today. Let us purpose to magnify you in all Your majesty and splendor, for you truly are GREAT. Let us let you love us more deeply, to the point we reciprocate that love back to you, and on to others.
Lord, we desire to become the true worshipers you seek, sitting adoringly at your feet…..and taking every opportunity to kiss our master’s hand.
In Christ and covered in dog hair,