Why I Don’t Like Missing A Sunday Worship Gathering.
So much substantive joy fills my life in worship. I guess one could argue that I don’t like missing a Sunday Gathering because it’s my pastoral duty, but duty alone doesn't account for the love and joy I am filled with in the worship moment. In fact, when I am on vacation I find a place to worship. I am not attending a worship event to set an example for my kids, but I am showing my family the source of strength and joy in my life is gathering with my family and worshiping Christ.
Community Worship is space is the one sacred place where everything is all about God. Gathering for worship hasn't always been easy. When Jeru and Jed were toddlers we quickly came to realize that gathering on a Sunday to worship was a laborious undertaking. By the time we got our toddlers ready to go to worship we were exhausted and usually running fifteen-twenty minutes late. We would then spend more time outside in the nursery than inside in the sanctuary. By the time we got home we wanted a vacation. We started questioning if it was worth it. We weren’t getting anything out it. The kids were too little and too cranky to receive any spiritual benefit. Why were we even going? It was precisely during those times that God gave us the opportunity to make worship about him, and not us. We came to see worship not as spiritual entertainment but the whole movement of attributing worth to Jesus and his family by working, readying ourselves, gathering and walking in and out, and returning home. There was something redemptive in thinking that buckling in a car seat was worship.
She who has been forgiven much, worships much. Recently I have been inspired by our Easter Baptismal Girls. Mar grabbing tissues and crying almost every Sunday. Carol smiling nudging those sitting beside with a look of “I told you so!” And Jackie faithfully worshiping God with all her heart and the look on her face of amazement at God. Their faithful attendance to worship, and the way each of them sits on the edge of their seats clinging to every word is sacred. It reminds me of the story of Jesus at Simon the Pharisee’s house. When the woman broke the perfume box over Jesus’s feet and worshiped him and the Pharisees disdained the woman and Jesus for this extravagant display of affection. To which Jesus replied, if the forgiveness is minimal the worship is minimal and if the worship is extravagant the forgiveness has been extravagant.
I don’t like to miss a worship gathering. I have been forgiven so much. God has brought me so far. I have so much to cry and sing and express myself to God for. Jesus is everything to me. And Jesus’s presence is best celebrated in community worship. I rarely miss a worship gathering because, quite frankly, there is nothing I enjoy more than hearing the whispers of God’s love, seeing the reflection of the Resurrected Christ on the faces of brothers and sisters, singing and swaying, clapping and praying. And when I see and experience all of that it reinforces how resplendent God’s forgiveness is in my life.
- Pentecost Sunday.
- More Time will be devoted to singing and worship and prayer as we anticipate the Holy Spirit