“Just going to church doesn’t make you a Christian any more than standing in your garage makes you a car.” (G. K. Chesterton)
Who needs to have time alone with God — to get to know Him? The answer is obvious isn’t it. Every single human being has that need.
We read in Revelation 1:5-6, “To Him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by His blood, and has made us to be a kingdom and priests to serve his God and Father”
So every God-fearing person, through the work of Christ is a priest and as such is able to stand before God and worship either in a group or, more to the point, as an individual. The Bible cites numerous examples of Godly people worshiping alone – from Cain in Genesis to John in Revelation. In both of those cases, however, we are warned against improper worship.
“And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.” Hebrews 10:25 (NLT)
God is a personal god and must be worshiped personally. Even in a group, each of us stands before God as an individual and are heard and judged individually. There are many occasions when group worship is simply not available and there are many occasions when worshiping alone is preferable to worshiping in a group. The act of personal worship or ‘worshiping alone’ is not meant to replace worshiping in a group. But it is another piece — a very important piece — of a Christian’s life. There are times when it is the only piece available. And it is a piece that can and should be exercised frequently.
Daily : Most of us are not able to worship in a church setting every day. Yet daily worship is essential to our mental, physical and spiritual well-being. Regular worship can produce a sense of grounding and a joy and purpose that cannot be found any other way. Just like physical and mental exercise, we must each attend to our spiritual exercises. Variations in amounts, times and schedules can be made to accommodate the ebb and flow of our lives and our seasons. Always be aware though, that too much time without exercise always results in atrophy.
Travel : Our need to worship remains with us no matter where we are. Most people find themselves away from their homes and churches from time to time. Perhaps you travel on business and find yourself alone in a motel. Perhaps you are a camper and like to trek in remote locations. While it is satisfying to find a suitable church and worship with a like-minded group, there are times when that is impractical or impossible. Worshiping alone may be your best or only recourse.
Illness : We may find ourselves temporarily unable to be involved in group worship because of an illness. Many illnesses have better and worse times. During the better times, we can usually find opportunities to worship, pray for healing and praise our Lord.
Infirmity : Infirmity is used here to mean a condition of life and not transient such as an illness might be. We may be unable to leave our homes or beds, yet our need to worship remains. During such times we may have access to few physical things to aid us in worship. But all we really need to worship is a willing spirit. If we have exercised and have some spiritual strength, these times can be some of the most rewarding and satisfying times of worship.
Between Churches : Issues such as a new job, a move to a new community or retirement may find us between churches. Sometimes changes in personal relationships may have a similar effect. Whatever the cause, worship remains essential and worshiping outside a corporate environment may be our best or only alternative.
Difficulty Assembling : Sometimes we find ourselves in places where assembling in groups to worship is difficult or even forbidden. Again our need to worship remains and must be exercised. In such cases worshiping in very small groups or simply worshiping alone may be the only options available.
Worshiping alone can help you answer questions about your identity and your purpose and calling. It can help you assess and understand your roles as a human – roles that constantly change and evolve. Worshiping God in a solitary way can help you understand and interpret your responsibilities to God and to other people. It can also establish a higher level of excellence for you and help you achieve it.
Much of our faith is based on words – words read, preached or heard in conversations with others. Words have limitations. While words can convey knowledge, they alone cannot bring you into the presence of God. Words contain within them resistance, emptiness and distractions. Experiencing God through the connection of your personal spirit with the Holy Spirit through personal worship can bring you into His presence in an exciting way – a way you may not have expected. It can provide deep conviction of the reality of His personal being and profound understanding of the character and awesomeness of the living God.
Copyright © 2020 Sam Dronebarger | All rights reserved