Wednesday, January 19, 2011

The church I went to Sunday...

***Keep in mind while you read this that I believe I am entirely responsible for my actions and my worship. Regardless of what you do or how you do it, I will still answer for what I do and how I do it. I'm not putting everything off on the church because, well, a lot of people went to the same church I did Sunday and didn't have the same experience I did.***

***PS, for those that don't know - I'm Pentecostal. If you're not pentecostal or believe in the filling of the Holy Spirit with speaking in tongues then this post might seem... odd to you. You might even worry that I was disruptive. Don't worry. I worried about that enough for the entire world. But, in a Spirit Filled church, my actions should have been considered nothing out of the ordinary.***

Dear churches,

I had an amazing time during the worship service this past Sunday.
And I want to tell you some of the things that helped. I’m not saying that you have to do these things, I’m not saying you’re wrong not to do these things, and I’m not saying… anything… except that all these things combined with the presence of the Holy Spirit and my willingness to step out of my pew created an amazing experience.

The church I went to Sunday put the song on the wall. My hands weren’t full of papers, or books. All I had to do was look up. I can’t raise my hands if my hands are full cause I’d look real silly.

The church I went to Sunday sang hymns off the wall but didn't feel required to sing each verse.

The church I went to Sunday sang choruses off the wall.

The church I went to Sunday repeated choruses and the choruses of hymns as they felt the Spirit of God lead them.

The church I went to Sunday, quite obviously, attempted to have a time of worship, rather than a “song service” (please tell me you see the difference?)

I walked from my little hidey-hole at the back of the church to the front of the church – directly in front of the stinking platform (but off to the side as much as I could convince God was ok) and I worshipped there. I’d say I sang there, but I didn’t sing much. I shook. I spoke in tongues. I spoke praises to God and every once in awhile if I could get my breath - I sang.

The only thing that I cared about at that exact moment was worship. Not singing. And that’s because the person leading the singing, well, he was worshipping too. He just had to sing more of his worship than I did.

So dear churches, you do whatever you like. I don’t even mean anything positive or negative for you. I’m just telling you how I worship. If you want me to sing, by all means sing. But if you want me to worship, then don’t just sing a song.

But I will tell you this; I’ve never come back from singing a song service awestruck. I left that service wanting more. I left that service hoping for the same experience if not a greater one next Sunday. I left there longing for more of God.

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