We have the life-long duty, as Christians, to love and serve God.
This means: (1) we must put the will of God first on the list of our personal values, and keep it there throughout our lives; (2) our attitude towards God must be that of a devoted son or daughter towards an all-loving Father; (3) we must never think or live as if we were independent of God; and (4) we must, without hesitancy, give God genuine worship and true prayer, both liturgical and private.
1. God’s will must be put first on the list of our personal values, and must be kept there throughout our lives.
Our Lord’s first concern was to give honor to His Father in Heaven. Doing His Father’s will, He said, was His food (cf. Jn 4:34). We who are united to Jesus and who share His divine life should also share in His devotion to the Father. Like our eldest brother, Christ, we should approach the Father with reverence, obedience, and love. Our first aim in life should be to do His holy will in all things.
2. Our attitude towards God must be that of a devoted son or daughter towards an all-loving Father.
Adoration, or worship, is the high honor we owe to God. This is because God, in His high perfection, has willed to create us, to keep us in existence, to watch over us as a father watches over his children, to forgive our sins and even to make us like Himself through divine grace. When we realize God’s infinite perfection and His love for us, we acknowledge our total dependence on Him.
3. We must never think or live as if we were independent of God.
The virtue of religion–the first of all moral virtues–enables us to render homage to God because it is due to Him. This virtue inclines us to acknowledge, by acts of worship, the rights of God, Who is the Beginning and the Last End of all things.
4. We must gladly give to God genuine worship and true prayer, both liturgical and private.
The offering of sacrifice is the supreme, visible, and social act of adoration. Sacrifice is an outward sign which expresses the intimate sentiments of the heart of man as he renders worship to God alone. When we perform acts of piety and recite vocal prayers, the words and gestures are intended to express the thought and intentions of the soul.
We worship God by fulfilling the duties of our state in life, by learning what God teaches, by praying and sacrificing, by believing in God, by hoping in Him and loving Him with our whole heart, by practicing acts of love toward those whom God also created (our neighbors), and by publicly adoring God at Mass.
But adoration must not be outward alone; it must come from the heart. This is the true worship God seeks, as Jesus expressed to the Samaritan woman: “But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshippers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth, for such the Father seeks to worship him” (John 4:23). Jesus also said, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind” (Matthew 22:37).