There are a few things I’ve learned since being married. Actually, I’ve learned a lot of things since being married, and most of those lessons have come the hard way. One of the things I’ve learned is that your praises and expressions of love to your spouse are more powerful and meaningful when they are specific. My wife loves it when I tell her I love her, but my expression of love is more powerful when I name specific things about her that I love and admire. To say specific details means that I’ve thought about her, and have taken the time to say something particular and special to her. When I say to her, “I love and admire you because of your compassion, your caring, the love you express for others, your honesty, your character, your love for Jesus Christ, and your intelligence.” When I say to her, “I love you”, I’ve said something good. When I say, “I love __________________ about you,” I’ve said something thoughtful, meaningful, and powerful.
Worship in the context of a church service works in a similar way. When we sing, when we pray, when we speak of God in worship, we need to take the time to thoughtfully consider what we want to say. God does not want platitudes that only demonstrate we haven’t given any real thought to his attributes, his deeds, or his promises. To say to God, “I love you because you make me feel good” or “You are the air I breathe” are empty platitudes that show only our capacity to express our emotions, and come painfully short of saying anything of thoughtful value about the holy God.
In the worship of God take the time to say something that matters.