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Disingenuous Worship

Written by Paula Gallaway on Friday, 11 April 2014. Posted in Blogs

Disingenuous Worship

Does your worship to the Savior sometimes feel… fake, forced, made-up or even “disingenuous?” When you start to pray or read the Word, does your mind wander? Or how about when you are worshiping the Lord... do you feel guilty that your thoughts keep wandering to the laundry, or the game that you are missing on TV? Well, I want to tell you… that is normal. In fact, “disingenuous” is a normal.

Here is what the word means:


  1. not candid or sincere, typically by pretending that one knows less about something than one really does.

The Bible says this about approaching God: John 4:23-24 (MSG) “It’s who you are and the way you live that count before God. Your worship must engage your spirit in the pursuit of truth. That’s the kind of people the Father is out looking for: those who are simply and honestly themselves before him in their worship. God is sheer being itself—Spirit. Those who worship him must do it out of their very being, their spirits, their true selves, in adoration.”

As we approach God, our lives are full of cares, ball-games, school, work, money, to-dos and so on and so on. When we begin to slow ourselves down to spend time in prayer, or to read the Bible, sometimes it may seem very difficult to focus immediately on the spiritual side... and this is where many stop and camp out... at the “disingenuous camp.” Meaning, as they start to worship, they don’t feel very spiritual, so they feel they are being fake, so they do the logical thing and stop. ”I don’t want to feel like a hypocrite, or try to be a phony. I’ll worship/pray/read the Word… when I feel to do it.” Well, campers… that may or may not come. Everyone feels a bit “disingenuous” when they start to worship, because the reality of this world and all of its cares seem so big, so in our face and real... but as we PRESS THROUGH, as we ABIDE… our reality begins to shift toward heaven, Jesus, and eternal, spiritual things and “genuine” worship.

Here is what that word means:


  1. truly what something is said to be; authentic.

Our worship to Jesus will change so much, as we move from one adjective to the next, from disingenuous worship to Heavenly-focused genuine worship. I want to encourage you to move past unreal, disingenuous worship. Pray when you don’t feel like it... lift your hands when the last thing on your mind is Jesus... read the Word even when you don’t feel like you are understanding or getting anything out of it. If you stop at the “camp of being disingenuous,” you will never move toward the “genuine,” toward a deeper prayer life, a daily revelation from the Word, and a powerful worship experience that has matured way beyond feelings. To worship past our feelings takes discipline, determination and a will to worship Him, not based on our feelings or thoughts at the time, but on the foundational knowledge, that only comes from the Bible... that God is worthy to be worshiped.

Don’t be deceived into thinking that everyone is more spiritual than you. Comparing yourself with others will only discourage you. Don’t look around and see people who you perceive to be freely worshiping and think…”There must be something wrong with me.” I challenge you, dear brothers and sisters in Christ… press on… dive deeper, aim higher and don’t be easy on yourselves to stop short of the goal. Move past a disingenuous, earthly, feelings-based worship into an intimate, genuine, love-filled worship of the Father.

Be not afraid, child of God, He understands you. He “gets” you more than anyone. He knows when you are overwhelmed with this world, its suffering and its ways… and He will reward you for pressing in to His presence. As you discipline yourself to be in His presence, as you practice genuine worship… it will come so easily, so truly, so authentically, that eventually, it will be the norm for you. And lastly, don’t freak out when you feel blah and a tad disingenuous. The muck of this world clings to us as we move through each day. Press past the disingenuous feelings into His true presence… that WILL come as you persevere.

Photo credit: flickr

About the Author

Paula Gallaway

Paula Gallaway

Paula is a credentialed minister with the Assemblies of God and enjoys leading worship not only at her home church, but at minister’s conferences and women’s events around her home state of Indiana! She is also currently serving as the Indiana District Music Director and has a great passion for the presence of Jesus to be of highest priority in all churches. She and her husband, Jerry, pastor at Lighthouse Assembly in Marion, Indiana, where they have served as senior pastors for the past 20 years. Paula has been married for 23 years to her best friend and is the proud mom of one awesome son.

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