To have reverence for someone or something means a gesture of respect that we show to the person. It is when we have a high sense of honour for someone that we respect. To show sincere reverence to God is when we sincerely honour God and fear Him. It is when we elevate God above everything else that exists.
Sincere reverence to God does not flow out of lip service or to show the world that we are the holiest. It means that our worship of God is not false. Sincere reverence to God is born out of respect and devotion to God.
False reverence is simply an outward show of righteousness but a high disregard for God’s commands.
Reverence starts in the heart and manifests in our actions. When we have reverence for God, it manifests in the things we do and how we do them.
Today the Pharisees and the teachers of the Law asked Jesus “Why do your disciples not follow the tradition of the elders, but eat with unclean hands?
Jesus answered, “You, shallow people! How well Isaiah prophesied of you when he wrote: these people honour me with their lips, but their heart is far from me. The worship they offer me is nothing but worthless, for what they teach are only but human rules”. They pay attention only to their traditions, responsibilities and not a true relationship with God. This then indicates that every false reverence rendered to God is worthless.
When Our worship becomes Worthless.
Jesus’ response to the Pharisees indicates that there are times when our worship or reverence to God seems to be worthless. They are worthless because they do not come from a sincere desire to worship God. They are worthless because we do them only for another intention, hereby giving God a false reverence.
Like the Pharisees, this is when we appear to be close to God, but truly we are not. It happens when we appear like a prayer warrior, but we do those things for the sake of the show of it.
Our worship of God becomes worthless when our body is in the church every day, but our heart is very far from Him. This is when we attend liturgical activities just for the sake of attending and not out of that heartfelt desire to meet God, hear His word and have a true relationship with Him.
Our reverence to God is meaningless when we appear perfect in front of people, but we do not want to have a sincere relationship with God.
Our reverence to God can be false when we serve God just because of our positions but not out of that inner love we have for God. This also happens when we go to mass because we do it to fulfill our Sunday obligations but there is no sincere hunger for the word of God. In us then, there is no sincere desire for God.
Our reverence is meaningless when there is no real and sincere desire to approach God for the day. When our hunger for serving God is born out of what to gain and not from the love we have for God, then our worship simply false.
Our worship of God may become worthless even when we read prayers from a book without truly praying to them. Thus, we are happy rushing it because, for us, the spiritual is nothing.
Our reverence to God is false when we take everything as if they are mechanical. It happens when we rush to society and church meetings because we are members, and our absence may lead to punishment from the group and not out of true devotion to God. Our reverence to God becomes worthless when our appearance seems to be innocent, but our hearts are dirty and full of evil.
True or Worthless?
1 Samuel 12:24 says “fear the Lord and serve Him faithfully from your heart. The question we can then ask is “why are we doing what we are doing?” Why do we belong where we belonged? Is it to truly serve God or just for membership?
True reverence for God comes from a sincere devotion. This is when we worship God because of the relationship we have with Him. Our devotion to God must sincerely come from the heart and not just to fulfill a certain obligation. Then comes the question for all of us “Is my worship of God true or worthless? This calls for reflection.
May God forgive us dearest and may we especially encounter Him today Amen