I didn’t preach this past Sunday, so I stood in the back and greeted people as they entered the building and helped people find seats in the auditorium.
A few minutes after the worship service had started, a woman walked in, and we chatted for awhile before she entered the auditorium. But, as soon as she stepped foot in the “sanctuary” she started to cry and she walked back out.
I followed her out and asked what was troubling her.
She opened up to me about some struggles she was facing and how those struggles just seem unbearable at times – and, sometimes, the pain just crashes into her like a wave.
That’s what was happening now.
She wondered how she could worship God with these thoughts distracting her.
I said, “You worship God by bringing your pain to Him; by crying out to Him for help; by being vulnerable enough to admit that you need God’s help. When you do those things, you are ascribing worth to God by seeking Him, and that’s worship.”
I went on to say, “And one other thing: as you worship God today with this church family that cares about you, I hope you will be reminded that God loves you, and He loved you before you even did anything to think that you’ve “earned” His love. You are His creation and He sees you as a person of great worth and value. Listen to Him today, and be reminded of who He says you are.”
She smiled and said, “Thank you.”
And she worshipped.
And she kept smiling.
And she laughed.
And she hugged others.
And she left with a hint of confidence in her steps.
Maybe you can relate to her story.
Maybe you feel discouraged.
Maybe you are dealing with struggles, too.
Maybe you have pain that hits you in waves, also.
I want you to know that God loves you.
And you are valuable to Him.
Because when you find Him, He will make you smile again.