Worship is more than just singing a couple of songs on Sunday mornings, then reading a devotion a couple of days a week. Here are 21 creative ways that you can fill your life and your heart with true worship.
#1 Read the Bible
This may not seem creative, but there are many ways to worship through reading Scripture. Try a different reading plan each year to explore the Bible in new ways, or study a passage deeply with sermon notes or commentaries. Deepening your understanding of and appreciation for the Bible is truly an act of worship in itself.
#2 Pray for Others – Out Loud
Reciting prayers as a child is usually done out loud, but as we grow older we can settle into praying quietly to ourselves. Remember that throughout Scripture, people of all ages and all stations prayed aloud – not for the sake of being heard, but to verbally proclaim the Name of God. Whether you are praying at home, with a group, or in a public setting, always be willing to put a voice to your cries to the Father.
#3 Take a Walk Outside
God is visible in all of nature. Take a walk through the park, a forest, or even your neighborhood. Watch for the little ways God reveals Himself through His creation – the plants, the animals, the sky, the sights and smells and sounds. Thank God for His creativity in the world, and bask in awe of His wonderful gifts to us.
#4 Look at the Clouds, or the Stars
Psalm 19:1 says, “The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims His handiwork.” Day or night, you can worship God simply by looking up. Gaze at the clouds and see the shapes they form, and learn about how they water the earth and give shade from the sun. At night, you can look up at the stars and see each formation, each pulsing point of light, and know that the God of the Universe keeps them all ablaze.
#5 Listen to New Music
When we say “worship” in a church setting, we typically refer to music. Open up your horizons to new types of worship music – maybe listen to a favorite hymn, or try a new album from a contemporary artist. Worship through song is a beautiful expression of love and gratitude to God that can easily be shared with others.
#6 Read Through a Book on Theology or Guided Prayer
Studying an aspect of God’s character and learning more about His nature is also an act of worship. This can be achieved through intensive scholastic study, or through guided prayer using a liturgy. Church tradition is a rich source of guided worship, and seeking to grow deeper in our knowledge of the Father is always a worthwhile pursuit.
#7 Worship Through Art
God is a God of creativity and uniqueness, and He has given us the gift and talent of artistic expression to reflect that part of His nature. Whether painting, sculpting, crafting or any other medium, you can share in His creativity and use your talents and abilities to preach the Gospel to others.
#8 Experiment with Different Body Postures While Praying
There are many appropriate physical postures for prayer. Try standing or sitting when praying, or take Scripture literally and come to God on your knees. Even lying prostrate with your face to the ground can be an effective means of focusing your mind and heart on God as you pray. No physical movement or posture will by itself bring us closer to God, but be open to using these different modes of prayer during your quiet time.
#9 Visit a New Church
Every Christian should be a devoted, regularly-attending member of a church, but it can be good on occasion to visit a church that worships God in slightly different ways. There are numerous denominations with numerous rituals on prayer, music, preaching, giving, service, and more. Try another church in your area sometime, and remember that any body of believers that gives glory and honor to Jesus Christ is worthy of your fellowship.
#10 Volunteer at a Local Faith-Based Organization
Worship is not just something we do on Sundays in a church building; it is meant to be a lifestyle that guides our actions every day. Contact your church office to learn more about faith-based organizations in your area that may need assistance. You can give monetarily, donate supplies, or give of your time and energy as a volunteer. All of these are worshipful ways to serve those around you.
#11 Donate to Your Church or a Nonprofit
Giving is also an act of worship. We should always be willing to live out our faith in our actions, but giving from what God has blessed us with is also worship. Every Christian should tithe to support the operation of their local congregation, but you can also give to other organizations in your area, or ask if your church has a particular need that you can help through an extra offering.
#12 Perform an Act of Selfless Generosity
Giving only to get something in return is not an act of true worship. We should give to others because it is what God has commanded us to do. It doesn’t have to be a major production either: a simple delivery for a neighbor or a meal for a friend, or some other small act of kindness throughout the day can blanket your life in acts of joyful worship.
#13 Schedule Prayer Breaks on Your Calendar
It can be hard to set aside time to pray, but this is where your calendar can be used for more than just appointments and meetings. Deliberately block out time in your schedule for prayer and devotion; it can help you focus the rest of your day by remembering that your whole life is an act of worship.
#14 Start Your Day with Silence
Rather than reach for your phone or your computer, try starting the day in silence. Take a few moments to pray silently to yourself, asking God to speak into your heart and fill you with His love. Follow this with a devotional or a reading from the Bible, and you can start your day by centering on God’s will for you.
#15 Try Fasting
If you are earnestly praying for someone in your life, or if you need guidance on a major decision or crisis, try fasting. From Bible times forward, fasting is an act of worship that retrains us to seek God first, even above our physical needs. Be sure that you are fasting responsibly, start for a shorter length of time, and seek medical guidance if you have health concerns. But don’t count fasting out if you want to go deeper with God.
#16 Pray as Soon as Your Heart is Burdened
Have you ever thought to yourself, “I should pray for that person,” then dismissed the thought from your mind? Don’t hold back – pray then and there! Postponing prayer can lead to forgetfulness. If you have been burdened with a desire to pray, take a brief moment to pray to yourself, then go on with the rest of your day.
#17 Enter into a Discipling or Accountability Relationship
Building up and encouraging other believers is an act of worship that you can engage in throughout the week as well as on Sunday. Hold a friend or family member accountable in their faith walk, and find ways that you can grow your faith together.
#18 Journal Your Prayers
Some may find a prayer diary or journal helpful as they pray over time. Keep a pen and paper handy to jot down what you prayed for on a given day, mark what God brought to your mind as you prayed, record special requests that you prayed for on behalf of others, and celebrate when you saw a tangible answer to your prayers or the prayers of your loved ones.
#19 Welcome Others into Your Home
Hospitality is encouraged throughout the Bible as a picture of worship. By opening your home to others – whether or not they are Christians – you are showing them the love of God, which encourages them to seek Him in their own lives.
#20 Visit the Sick or Elderly
Many churches have a ministry for those members who cannot physically come to church for various reasons. Consider joining the church staff on such visits, and provide love and encouragement to those believers who may not be able to join with others each week. You can be an active part of keeping them involved in the local church simply by your faithful presence.
#21 Take a Class at Your Local Church
Many congregations have classes throughout the week that study an aspect of Scripture, Christian living, or allow for greater service in the church. By taking part in these opportunities, you not only grow your own faith, but you actively serve others by encouraging them in their own faith walks.
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Natalie Regoli is a child of God, devoted wife, and mother of two boys. She has a Master's Degree in Law from The University of Texas. Natalie has been published in several national journals and has been practicing law for 18 years.