One of the biggest lies the modern society tells us is that faith is personal. But is it?
In my reflection on faith and religion, it’d occurred to me that religion is nothing but a ritual — A systematic system of worship drafted out by religious leaders to help people walk through the entire process of worship. But that system of worship isn’t a very good representation of faith, is it?
Deep down, we know who God is. He is the unconceivable, unfathomable, unimaginable, uncontrollable, Creator of the Universe. And we know, deep down, that God has a heart of love and we will one day be reunited with Him in eternal union. How can such a majestic reality be encapsulated within a system of rituals? How can ritualistic legalism be a representation of who He is?
Is burning a sacrifice sufficient to worship the Creator of the universe? Is tithing sufficient to worship the Giver of Life? Is the shaking of joss sticks three times sufficient to send our prayers to Him? Who are we that we should confine God into a system of rituals? How dare we limit God into a mere “belief”? It’s an abomination to call God “an object of faith”!
God isn’t an object of faith. God isn’t a belief. God is God. The One and Only. The One Who Is Who He Is.
Regardless of our cultural backgrounds and religious subscription, God is still God; our God.
And at the heart of worship, we need to be reminded of this nature of God — He is the Creator of all conceivable universes, the realm of the seen and the unseen. In order for us to be reconciled to Him and be joined with Him in eternal union, He reaches out to us to the point of walking alongside with us and dying on our behalf. But because He is sovereign over all things, not even the power of death has a grasp on Him. Because of His life-giving nature, He resurrected with a new body and awaits us to return to Him.
Because of His nature, how can anyone box Him into a structure made by human hands? Because of His exceeding greatness, how can anyone imagine, let alone create an image of Him? Because of His eternal attributes, what makes us think our worship is sufficient? Because of His life-giving nature, shouldn’t we appear before Him with fear and trembling? Because of His power, what makes us think that we can box Him up in statues and symbols? Because of His sovereignty, what made us think that worship can be structured into rigid liturgical orders?
God has been merciful with our ignorance. But the time has come for us to rethink the greatness of God and to come to Him with the reverence He deserves. God is calling us to repent and turn away from our past ignorance so that we may once again worship God for who He is, not forgetting that there will come a day when He judges us for the decision we are making today.
Whatever way we use to we worship God, that’s personal. The way we lead our lives, the choices we make in our daily lives — these are personal. But God isn’t. Proper understanding of God will enable us to worship God in a way that He deserves. Will we offer our lives to Him? He is worthy, whatever our choice.