Students at OBU experienced the talent and wisdom of Bob and Esther Burroughs in Raley Chapel Wednesday morning. Instead of a traditional worship service, the Bisonnette Glee Club performed an anthem titled "Beholding All Your Glory," written and composed by the couple.
After the song, Esther Burroughs greeted students and opened the weekly chapel service with a comical story about her husband's misadventures in the midst of leading worship. Her message, "The Mystery of True Worship," follows OBU's current chapel theme, "The Purpose of Man: Designed to Worship," based on the book by Christian author A.W. Tozer.
Burroughs was a special guest on campus for the annual OBU Women's Missions and Ministry Day. The chapel service and following luncheon were dedicated to recognize the women of Oklahoma for their valued contributions to OBU.
Quoting Psalm 139, Burroughs explained to students that God calls His followers through the Bible not only to fellowship with Him, but also to enter into worship with Him daily. She drew parallels between John 4 and "The Purpose of Man" by Tozer, inviting students to worship "with your whole person." She said worship is meant to strengthen the relationship between God and Christians, transforming the worshiper's way of life to make him or her more like Jesus Christ.
"Worship must change us," Burroughs passionately encouraged students. "The Spirit of God flows from God, from the Word of God, into our lives and our being, and out of our lives and our being and our doing as we represent Christ."
Burroughs also discussed the nature of worship with students, clarifying that even if only one person experiences a worship-filled moment with God, that moment is still valuable. She shared the story of a night she spent learning about the different names of Jesus with her young granddaughters. Her granddaughter Caroline was a slower reader, and while reading through Isaiah about the "Prince of Peace," Caroline accidentally read "Price of Peace."
Burroughs said she smiled and did not correct Caroline, however, because her inadvertent error was actually a true statement. Burroughs recalled that moment as a moment of worship, even though she was the only who benefited from her daughter's mispronunciation.
Using stories of her own worship experiences, Burroughs implored students to open their eyes and see the world around them from a servant's perspective. She spoke of a man who, on his way to prepare a church for a worship service, passed several homeless men, not giving them a second thought. Only when he returned home did he realize God had provided him an opportunity to serve, and he had missed it.
She told another story of a man who sanded and waxed the floors in the Burroughs' new home, singing as he worked. Before he left the house, he prayed, consecrating to God every floor in every room with the hope that the people who entered the house would feel the love of Jesus.
"To worship God in truth and spirit, we must open our eyes and see the fields," Burroughs said. "True worshippers serve. True worship will change your lives."