City Harvest Church's advisory pastor delved deeper into his “Weekend of Worship” message, reminding the Church not to forget the goodness of God in the midst of hard times.
“Worship gives your soul and your spirit wings!” declared Phil Pringle during the services of Sep. 6 and 7 at City Harvest Church. His message was the second part of his “Weekend of Worship (WOW)” message continued from the previous week.
Pringle reminded the Church to bless, praise and worship the Lord in every circumstance.
Preaching out of Mark 4:38, in which the disciples asked Jesus if he did not care that they were going to perish in the storm, Pringle told the congregation, “Sometimes when we are in trouble, we think that God does not care. We let our eyes get on the problems around us and think ‘God’s forgotten about me.’ Well, God says, ‘I’m in the boat, and that is enough. My presence in your life is going to still the storms.’”
Reading from another verse in Hebrews 13:15, he exhorted the congregation to keep on praising and worshiping God despite their circumstances. “The highest worship that we can ever bring to God is when there is no reason to bring any praise or any worship at all,” said Pringle. “You speak to yourself: ‘Bless the Lord, oh my soul!’ and you raise up from the inside of you a level of worship you can never summon under any other circumstances, because you have decided to overcome your circumstances with a heart of praise and worship.”
TRUE WORSHIP IN THE PAST, PRESENT AND FUTURE
Believers need to learn to worship God for their past, present and future. When they choose to worship God for their past, they rewrite what has happened in the past by choosing not to curse or complain about it.
Pringle exhorted the church to praise God for the present. 1 Thessalonians 5:18 is a timely reminder for believers to give thanks in everything.
Christians are also called to worship God for the future that He has set before them.
True worship is defined in Psalm 31:19 (MSG). “True worship is not half-hearted, distracted worship,” said Pringle. “True worship is when everything within me blesses God – my mind, my heart, my emotions, my relationships, my finances, my circumstances – everything in my life is aimed to bless and please God!”
Having laid the foundation, Pringle preached from his main Bible reference for the weekend: Psalm 103:1-5. He taught on the main elements of true worship based on this psalm.
1. True worship blesses the Lord
There are many times the soul is unwilling to bless God, which is why Pringle encouraged the congregants to speak to their soul, and initiate the blessing. The Christian walk requires believers to take initiative for many things.
“God wants you to initiate, to internationalize your Christianity far more then when you just started out as a believer,” said Pringle.
2. True worship blesses His holy name
“The name of God is His character and His reputation,” Pringle noted. “If you have a good name, it’s because you have a good reputation, which is based on your good character. We need to remember that God’s character and reputation are impeccable. The core of God’s being is His consistent integrity—He can be completely relied upon. ”
Pringle told the congregation that in a world full of blasphemy, full of people who want to assassinate the character of God and His servants, the Church has to hallow God’s name, the name that is holy.
“We are called to elevate and exalt the name of the most High God. Jesus Christ, Himself the exact representation of God, is given many names in the Bible.” He went on to rattle off a list of names that Jesus was known as, including Alpha and Omega, High Priest, Bread of Life, Chief Shepherd, Chief Cornerstone, Prince of Peace, True Vine.
3. True worship forgets not
Believers need to keep reminding themselves of the things God has done for them.
“Sometimes, we think that we need something new in our lives to be revived. But we just need to be reminded of the things we already know, to be revived,” explained Pringle.
A picture collage showcasing the milestones of CHC in each year since its conception was displayed on the screen. Pringle wanted the Church to remember and thank God for the past 24 years–to forget not all His benefits.
- 1989 – CHC held first service at 41A Amber Road
- 1994 – School of Theology started; 6,307 graduates to date
- 1994 – First worship album ‘Against All Odds’ launched
- 1995 – CHC moves to Hollywood Theatre
- 1996 – Chinese Church started; ‘Church without Walls’ initiative
- 1997 – City Harvest Community Services Association started
- 2001 – CHC moves to JW ($48million, debt-free)
- 2002 – City College (then known as City Harvest Education Centre) was opened
- 2002-2004 – Crossover Project (more than 100 projects, over 500,000 attendees, 136,783 decisions in total)
- 2003 – EMERGE Youth Conferences birthed
- 2004 – Humanitarian projects start in various countries
- 2005 – CHC moves to Expo
- 2006 – O School set up
- 2007 – Cultural Mandate message preached; Citycare started
- 2008 – City News started; First Asia Conference held
- 2010 – Second Asia Conference held
- 2011 – CHC moves to Suntec; City Radio birthed
- 2013 – CHC moves back to Suntec; now has 48 affiliates in 9 nations
“Nine were healed, but the Bible tells us only the one who came back was made whole, made complete,” said Pringle. “Worship completes you. The ungrateful, un-thankful, non-worshiping heart will never find completion in life. Understand that we are wired to worship!”
Pringle ended the service with an altar call for salvation, which saw many going forward to receive Christ as their Lord and Savior.
Napalie Huang, 26, an executive, was greatly impacted by the timely message. “Pastor Phil's message really came at the right time to bring us back to an important foundation of our Christian faith–that is to keep on praising and worshiping God, even in tough times. I was very touched when I saw what CHC has experienced in the past 24 years, and I believe He has greater things for us as we put on the wings of worship to soar above our troubles to where God is, we shall emerge stronger than before for His glory!”
Philson Neo, 25, a bank transaction analyst, echoed similar sentiments. “Pastor Phil shared a very timely message to encourage us to have a spirit of true worship in our lives. It is very important that we choose to adore and mediate on His goodness and sovereignty, no matter what happens in our lives. And we can worship God with full confidence because His thoughts towards us are always good.”