“Express yourself…Express yourself. You don’t ever need help, from nobody else. All you got to do now…Express yourself!” is a catchy chorus to a popular song by Charles Wright (1970; oh boy, I just kind of dated myself), and though it is not a song we would sing in church, it does provide a basis for understanding my expression of worship. In a way, it is a charge and a confirmation that I have all I need within me; in this case, to worship our Savior.
For me, worship is a lifestyle.
It is not just something I do, but it is a part of who I am. To that end, I worship in public and in private. I am unapologetic about my expression of worship. And my motivation is rooted in my love for Christ and the sacrifice of the Father.
So, what is worship?
In Psalm 5:7, it is referred to as reverent fear and awe of God. The Bible makes several references to worship; and that it is a spiritual act. Since we have the distinct honor of housing the Holy Spirit, which is one with God the Father and the Living Son, worship is then my acknowledgement of the very relationship Christ came and died for. Therefore, I worship in spirit and in truth (John 4:24).
Without shame nor care of how others view me, by faith, through spiritual connection and out of sheer adoration, I exalt my very life-source. When I worship physically – outwardly – it is also an indication of His presence for others. Like David, I may dance with all my might (2 Samuel 6:14), for I too am proud of the God I serve. Or, I might cry out of darkness, seeking God in my low moments (all of Psalm 86). Or, my soul will want to just bless Him for who He is and what He has done in my life (all of Psalm 103).
I moved to Oregon at the end of July (2016), with no family or friends within 300 miles, and faced a few challenges I did not think I would get over (a bad relationship, a car accident, and losing my aunt who helped raise me), all within two months’ time. However, the provisional God we serve, in spite of my shortcomings and choices, found favor in me. I have an amazing career, a wonderful church family, and a beautiful home in which I worship him daily. Growing up in both a Baptist and Pentecostal church, preachers would say, “When I think about His goodness and all He has done for me, my soul cries out, hallelujah”, and I get that now. If He had stopped at the cross, He would still be worthy, but He goes beyond; beyond who I am on the outside, to meet me on the inside.
How do I not worship Him?
I don’t need a reason, nor an audience; I just need my faith and a willingness to acknowledge the God of every circumstance and victory. My soul desires the God who is infinite in power, and yet intimate in presence. This is my expression of worship.
Tenisha Tevis has been a part of the Grace Chapel community since November of 2016. In her spare time, she loves working out and also enjoys cooking!