That Thing You Do.

“Oh Lord, our Lord how majestic is your name in all the earth. “


For my entire life I read this verse and figured it was about mountains, sunsets and jungle flowers so exotically that it’s difficult to believe that they’re real.

But these days I think that mountains paint a weak picture of God’s majesty, compared to the wonders of his children.  And this is a bold statement coming from me because I seriously love the mountains.

Lately I wonder if God’s name is worshipped the fullest and most powerfully when his children discover their passions and are brave enough to go through with them, to pursue them, to embody his creative-splendor with their hours of their lives.

Maybe in this way, worship isn’t so much about a song on Sunday but about faithful hands but about being fully ourselves for our Father throughout the week.

Being brave enough to listen to that whispering voice inside.  The one that says:

“You know that thing you love to do?  Do that.  Do it for Me, with Me. Do it as your life’s work, even when you’re feeling scared and too small.  Those feelings are the enemy, he wants no part of this beauty.  He wants you in hiding, to keep my beauty and love contained.”

Now that I’ve opened my eyes to this concept, I see people’s passionate hearts as beautiful worship, I tear up at all the gifts and wonder God poured into his people.  Slam poetry? Glass blowing? Perfect violin solos?  It’s all too much, it makes me wonder why I bother with Mascara anymore,  life’s too beautiful to stay dry-eyed.

I have a friend who is so passionate about pediatric physical therapy that it makes me tear-up.  Because I can see her passion and worship when she tell me about her desire to help children do more than their doctors imagined.

Innumerable writers and bloggers leave me breathless because I know what a hard fight it is to spill your heart onto the keyboard ….just. right.  Or have the bravery to sit down to write in the first place, it’s scary and it’s vulnerable and it’s worship.

And I’m not sure we even know we’re doing it half the time.

Perhaps we’re often worshipping him against our will by being too stubborn to acknowledge that the only reason we have the paint, the words, coding, music notes or  blueprints is because he planted the seeds.

Maybe, I don’t know but… maybe, eh?

But I think that when we realize that the passion originates from Him and the glory is His alone, then we start to loosen up inside and it flows a bit more freely.

I’ll never forget Kyle Idleman at STORY last year… because he said something like this:

You have to tune into God first because he gave you the passion to do your craft to begin with.  He doesn’t want it to be your idol, but your worship.  If you start to put it over him he will take away the muse, why would he fuel you for something that leads you away from Him?

My jaw hit the floor and didn’t come back up for days.

Because that was me, forgoing prayer or intimacy with God to get another blog post in or to

But when I see it as Worship, when I realize that I’ve been given the chance to show God’s wonders to you through my words?

I dare not stray, this source is all that I want flowing through me.. lovely-beautiful, messy worship.

I always thought that work and worship and passion were separate things.  But now?  It’s a piece of God’s call on my life, of how I worship.  

Is there anything more exciting than realizing that the thing you love to do is the exact thing God created for?

  • Natalie Hart

    This just makes me smile. Thank you.

    • Leanne Penny

      Good! Because I still remember your reading at the retreat, such an amazing thing you’re doing there lady.

  • Hannah

    Yes, Leanne! You nailed it! It wasn’t until I started writing for His glory, instead of my own, that things finally started to happen. And you’re right–there is nothing more exciting than realizing that the thing you love to do is the exact thing God created you for! Is He good, or what?! It makes you feel small, and special, all at the same time.

    • Leanne Penny

      Yes. And I LOVE that thing YOU do. Can’t wait to share it with the world… obsessively… and then definitely cry about it.

  • Mark Allman

    I am impressed by people who are passionate about their endeavors. I do believe that it all ties together. We are our passions, our work, our play, and our relationships. How we go about all of those can be our worship to God.

    • Leanne Penny

      You’re so right Mark and don’t you just LOVE looking at it all that way.

  • Joy Lenton

    Lovely worship-filled thoughts, Leanne. All our gifting and creativity is from God’s hands and as we surrender and offer it back to Him it becomes beautiful in His sight. Everything we are and do can be worship if, in the process, we are celebrating the worth-ship of God. And you are so right when you say it’s about “being fully ourselves for the Father throughout the week”. That is offering, being the best we can be by His grace.