Friday, February 29, 2008

More Transforming Worship

You are the strength that keeps me walking.
You are the hope that keeps me trusting.
You are the light to my soul.
You are my're everything.

How can I stand here with you and not be moved by you?
Would you tell me how could it be any better than this?
“Everything” sung by LifeHouse

The assembly of Christians is critical for our exposure to the strength of the God, the truth regarding our hope in God, the light of God, and our purpose in God. When our songs, our Supper, our attention to the Word, our prayers, and our sacrificial offering are designed to direct our hearts, minds, and bodies to God Almighty, how could we not be moved by him?

“Viewing assembly as a means of grace means that God is at work through this event to transform us into his image. Encountering God transforms us. His holy presence sanctifies, encourages, and empowers us” (Hicks, Melton and Valentine in A Gathered People).

The words we say and hear, the memories and visions of the future, the bread and drink that demonstrate our fellowship, the participation in worship and encouragement are not merely sections of a one hour exercise that we leave behind like we are walking away from a gym. Our participation in the assembly of the saints is supposed to transform us. It will only transform us, however, if we participate with the goal of transformation in mind. We are not led into worship, we enter into worship. Our assembly is not a gathering in which we are passive observers who might be dragged into participation if the show is particularly good. From the first reading to the last prayer we engage because we know that our engagement will change our lives and we can then change our world. That’s Life at Work!

1 comment:

Stoned-Campbell Disciple said...

Thanks for reading A Gathered People and pointing people to its message. I pray it has been a blessing to you.

Seeking Shalom,
Bobby Valentine