A devotional by Kay Pflueger
“… But the Most High does not dwell in sanctuaries made with hands, as the prophet says: Heaven is my throne, and the earth my footstool. What sort of house will you build for me? says the Lord, or what will be my resting place?”
–Acts 7:48-49 (CSB)
The word “sanctuary” is defined by Merriam-Webster as “the most sacred part of a religious building” or “the room in which general worship services are held” or “a place (such as a church or a temple) for worship.” We may hear church sanctuaries referred to as “houses of worship” as that is where we expect to go to honor the Lord through song and prayer. But is that the only place where worship can take place?
When you think of worship, what setting comes to mind? Are you in a majestic cathedral with a massive pipe organ? Maybe you are in a little country church with wooden pews? Or are you standing in a homeless shelter serving soup to hungry families?
Worshipping the Lord is not confined to the four walls of a church building. It can happen as you are standing at the kitchen sink washing dirty dishes, or in the quiet of the night while feeding and soothing a hungry infant, or when hammering the shingles on the roof of a “Habitat for Humanity” project. According to Mark 10:45, we are called not to be served but to serve. This is not meant to be obligatory service but rather should be a deep-down-from-the-heart prayerful outreach.
What does this kind of worship look like? Envision it as embracing interruptions in our day when an opportunity to serve presents itself. See it as bravely praying God would send someone our way who we can share His love with. Picture it as asking Him to reveal opportunities to worship Him through service—service that helps us embrace the uncomfortable and not shy away from that call due to fear of the unknown. Believe that it is connecting to God in the whole of our daily life.
Worship is showing reverence and adoration for God. When we reach out to serve others, we are demonstrating our love for Him in a very tangible, practical way. In John 13, we read how Jesus modeled servant behavior by washing the dirty feet of His disciples. Note Jesus’s words in John 13:16-17 (CSB): “Truly I tell you, a servant is not greater than his master, and a messenger is not greater than the one who sent him. If you know these things, you are blessed if you do them.”
The idea of worshiping God throughout the week might feel somewhat intimidating as I suspect it is easier to think of worship as something we do for an hour a week within the four walls of our church buildings. But consider how we can honor God by the way we act among our families, friends, and co-workers—how we can worship Him through offering every action to Him. Billy Graham said: “The highest form of worship is the worship of unselfish Christian service. The greatest form of praise is the sound of consecrated feet seeking out the lost and helpless.” Let us praise God today by seeking out opportunities to serve others.
In closing, I’d like for you to listen to this song “Heart of Worship” by Hillsong United.
Let’s Pray: Help us, Father God, to find ways to worship you in our daily activities…from caring for our own families to reaching out to those in need. May we learn to worship you each moment of every day. Teach us to see our whole lives as one great worship service, in which we honor you through every word, every thought, every deed. Open our eyes to those in need of your love. Show us ways to serve in the same manner as Jesus served. In Jesus’s Name I pray. Amen.
Learning to read as a young child opened a world of adventure for Kay Pflueger. She came to realize that words can have a unique power and beauty.
Choosing to share those words in her devotional writings has become a joyful and rewarding experience for her. As a widow, she feels a special affinity towards those who are grieving or experiencing loss.
When she is not spending time with her married son and three grandchildren, she is either reading, cooking, writing, or working on pursuing her Copyediting Certification.
Kay is an avid baseball fan who looks forward every summer to following her favorite team, the Chicago Cubs.
Kay is an active member of Victory Lutheran Church in her hometown of San Diego, California.