This morning before church I was in our little room playing the piano, I was playing various worship songs and choruses when something came up and I stopped playing to talk to someone about trash.
Someone taking out the trash and the duties assigned with it.
Then I carried on playing my worship songs.
Some little thought niggled at me, but I didn't stop to think it out. It was about time to finish getting ready to go so after a bit I just stopped playing and got ready.
We tried a new church today. Christian Family Church. They had a 9am service and an 11am service and since my brother is throwing a paper route in the middle of the night we let him sleep late so we could go to the 11 o'clock service.
As we got to the church the 9am folks are leaving. I was a little disturbed to see people in shorts, jeans, t-shirts, some walking by chatting on cell phones and holding their coffee cups.
I was trying to shrug that off as I went in to where the worship service has already started, and I was trying desperately to enter in and worship, worship but I notice I'm having difficulty tuning out all the distractions around me. People are walking around, talking, chatting... I remind myself to focus... the ushers are constantly walking up and down the aisles... focus... the people two aisles up are talking and laughing with each other... focus... someone pushes in a stroller with an icee...
That was my undoing.
I wasn't sure if it was right or not (I am still not sure), but suddenly I just couldn't sing. I did not want my voice mingled in with theirs. Even when they settled down a little bit towards the end and the singing seemed more focused I just kept thinking over and over again "lukewarm... lukewarm...lukewarm...." I didn't want to be a part of anything that God would want to spit out with distaste.
I could have been entirely wrong for feeling this way. But my entire being was wishing they would stop singing.
I couldn't stop the tears from falling down my face. It hurt. I didn't want God treated badly, disrespected, treated so haphazardly. And I felt He was.
It was during this, that God reminded me of my morning activities. I was playing words such as "worthy is the Lamb seated on the throne. We crown You now with many crowns.."
Then talking about trash.
Then returned to "I worship You almighty God, there is none like You..."
... I was ashamed of myself.
But I was thankful for the new understanding of reverence and holiness in my life.
When I stop what I'm doing and I begin doing something unto God, whether singing a song or playing the piano, praying, I need to remember that what I'm doing during that moment is the most important thing I'm doing. Because God is worthy of it.
God is HOLY. And as such, when I offer Him something then in respect to that Holiness I need to make sure that I don't allow anything else to become more important or intrude. It broke my heart today to know that I had done that to Him. To know that something that was repulsing me so much, had been in my own heart.
It's kind of like finding a polluted sewage pond, and running from it, only to discover that your drinking water comes from said pond.
I've been seeking God for holiness, righteousness, that I would walk uprightly in as pure a way as He can create in me. So this painful revelation today was special to me, and I count it as an answer to prayer.
The church was still awful. We sat through a 10 minute sermon on why you should tithe (which I certainly agree with) before the pastor finally came on and literally unveiled a giant HDTV (and when I say giant, I'm telling you it was over 10 foot tall) and he did this so he could discuss the new sign they were buying. A big HDTV sign, 30' by 25'. (Obviously, the reason they need you faithful in your tithes.)
We spent 10 minutes listening to him talk about the glory of the sign when I passed the note begging that we could go. We walked out.
Ironically enough, they introduced the idea with the scripture saying we should into to all the world and make disciples, and how 70% of their visitors came from friends and family referrals and only 7% came from their billboard.
They actually claimed that now, all of their traffic would come from the new sign.
*snide comment not added here, but trust me when I say it's hard not to say it*
Please pray for us as we look for a church home here. I'm okay with going to church after church, (though it's certainly not my preference) but I'm not interested in going to churches that don't worship God with reverence and sincerity. I'm praying for wisdom, and a finely tuned ear to the direction God may want us to go.
Meanwhile, my lesson in Holiness today tells me that God is not my hobby. And must not be treated as such. When I sit down to enjoy a moment with Him, it's not the same as playing with a postage stamp collection, or some scrapbook endeavor. Instantly, an ordinary moment of an ordinary day is completely transformed into a moment when you, simple ordinary you, arrest attention from the Almighty King of all Kings.
It's also important to remember that God can teach you something even in the worst and most dreadful of circumstances. Problems and bad events in your life are not for no reason whatsoever. They are there for a purpose and a season and God will use it for your benefit.
Always and forever.