Attitude Is Everything! (The Attitudes of Worship)

I have been leading worship at home and around the world for over thirty years. In my busiest seasons, I have led worship up to fourteen times in a single week. I did not always feel like it. Sometimes I just wanted to stay home and relax. But, I have come to learn that having a proper attitude in life and in worship is so important!

Jesus said that:

‘God is looking for true worshippers who will worship Him in spirit and in truth’.

God doesn’t like fake! God wants our hearts to be true before Him. The Bible says that

“the eyes of the LORD search the whole earth in order to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to Him.”

Did you catch that word, ‘fully’? I want to be one of those ‘true worshippers’ who is ‘fully’ engaged. I want to have a proper attitude when I worship God.


Here are a number of the attitudes of worship that I have discovered in the Bible.

1. Thankfulness

I love it when my kids and grandkids express their thankfulness for a gift that I have given them or something that I have done for them. I love it when they don’t take those things for granted.

God is the same. He wants us to have thankful hearts when we come to worship Him. Over and over in the Bible, I read the words; ‘Give thanks to God’ or ‘giving thanks always’ or ‘be thankful’ or ‘thanks be to God’ or ‘with thanksgiving’.

Having a grateful heart is huge! When we realized the depths and the heights of His love and the great gift of His Son, Jesus; how can we be anything but thankful!

2. Honesty

When I read through the Psalms, I am sometimes shocked at the honesty of the writers! You can really tell when they are going through struggles.  Their humanness shows through.

God is not surprised at the difficulties that we go through. He knows when we have been treated unfairly. He knows when we have been hurt. Frankly, you are not going to shock Him.

I think some of the best song lyrics come from the deepest sorrows and tragedies. Think of the great hymn ‘It Is Well With My Soul”.

When peace, like a river, attendeth my way. When sorrows like sea billows roll; Whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to say: It is well, it is well with my soul.

It is well with my soul, It is well, it is well with my soul.

Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come. Let this blest assurance control. That Christ hath regarded my helpless estate, and hath shed His own blood for my soul.

Those lyrics were born out of a ship collision at sea that took the life of Horatio Spafford’s four daughters. When you begin to understand the depths of the writers sorrow, the faith behind the lyrics begins to shine like a beacon of hope!

3. Reverence

I grew up on the west coast of Canada and I love informality. But, when you come before the King of Kings, sometimes you need to remember to come with reverence.

The writer of the book of Hebrews put it this way.

“Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe,” (Hebrews 12:28)

Sometimes in our need for informality we forget who God is. I believe that if you really understand who God is, reverence and awe will naturally be a part of your attitude.

4. Faith

I want my worship to be pleasing to God. In Hebrews 11:6 it says.

“It is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who wants to come to Him must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who sincerely seek Him.”

When I lift my hands in worship and sing to God, I have faith that He is there. I have never seen God but I frequently sense His Presence. But, even if I never sense that He is close, God is pleased when I seek Him. He is pleased when I have the faith to worship Him no matter what my feelings are.

5. Humility 

James, the brother of Jesus, said,

“God opposes the proud but shows favour to the humble.”.

Frankly, I want God on my side! I want to have a humble attitude. It is too easy to be impressed by our own accomplishments and forget who is the real source of all the good in our life.

I want to die to my pride and get my self-worth from my relationship with God. God is the source of all the good things in my life. Knowing who God is and that He has given you all that you have, keeps you on the right road to have a correct and humble attitude in your worship.

6. Joy 

When my grandkids look up at me and smile, it lights up my heart. Jesus said ‘I have come that their joy might be full’. God’s desire is for us to be joyful.

God loves it when His children are full of joy. To many times in life we feel beaten down. Too many times we feel defeated. God doesn’t want us to feel that way. He wants us to remember that He is on our side. He wants us to remind ourselves of how far we have come. He wants to remind us of how many victories that He has already accomplished in our lives.

God wants us to come into our worship times with joyful songs. Psalm 100 says it this way:

Worship the Lord with gladness. Come before Him, singing with joy. Acknowledge that the Lord is God! He made us, and we are His.

7. With our whole heart

I often put this slogan on my weekly worship lists.

Screen Shot 2014-08-06 at 8.18.12 AM

God commands us love Him with all our heart, soul, mind and strength. Frankly, I don’t want to go through life without passion. I want to be someone who puts my whole heart and being into what I am doing. Wether I am playing tennis, mountain bike riding, writing music, studying or spending time with my family; I want to do it with my whole heart.

God wants our worship and our love for Him to be with our whole heart! As a musician, I think it’s a crime to do music without passion. As a lover of God, I think it’s a crime to just ‘go through the motions’ in our worship. God deserves so much more.

Human beings have a huge range of attitudes. I want to make sure that when I come into God’s presence, that I come with a great attitude. I want to be thankful, honest, reverent, joyful, humble and come with a heart full of faith. God deserves our whole heart!

Question: This is not an exhaustive list of attitudes, what other attitudes are important to you when you come to worship God?

Check out my new book.. “Leading Worship ~ Notes from a Grand Adventure available in Kindle or Soft Cover Editions.  This is a great gift for the musician or worshipper in your life.

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14 Responses to Attitude Is Everything! (The Attitudes of Worship)

  1. Pingback: What I’ve Discovered About Worshipping God ~ Part 1 | Following God: Notes ♫ From A Grand Adventure

  2. Sylvia butler says:

    Be expectant! We should also expect to be changed by being in His presence. Psalm 22 verse 3 But thou art Holy, O thou that inhabitest the praises of Israel… we have had an encounter with Holiness and should reflect that.

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  5. Great post – might reblog at some point! Blessings to you! Ros

  6. You may enjoy a post I’ve written on similar theme – which has some great comment from CS Lewis as well. Regards, Ros

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