Friday, January 20, 2012
Out of Your Comfort Zone!
"God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth."
For years, I attend the Episcopal Church. As in Catholic and Anglican worship, Episcopal services are liturgical and traditional. Every type of service or sacrament is dictated by The Book of Common Prayer. Deviation from these formal rites is a rarity.
There is something marvelously reassuring in knowing what to expect when going to church. I can walk into any Episcopal church anywhere in the country and follow right along. Assured no punches will be pulled. No detours taken.
The rich, reverent language of The Book of Common Prayer unites us. Keeps us focused. Kneeling. Standing. Praying.
Everyone is literally on the same page during worship.
All led as one to the pinnacle of the service: The Holy Eucharist. The Great Thanksgiving. Holy Communion.
We are in our comfort zone . . .
While there is solace in the sameness of each Sunday service, there is also the risk of complacency. The prayers are rote. The order of service is routine.
Chiseled in stone, it can grow as cold as one . . .
It is all too easy for the seasoned Episcopalian to sleepwalk through what should be a spirit-filled, glorious experience of corporate worship.
For the words, meant to bring honor and praise to God, to become meaningless, stale in their repetition.
A recitation, not revelation.
Liturgically locked, not free in spirit.
Or, in truth . . .
Do you attend a liturgical church? Are you going through the motions every Sunday, or are you worshiping God in all spirit and in truth?
Will you pray with me?
Let us remember, Father, that you are spirit and we should ever worship and praise You with hearts, minds, souls, and strength in that same spirit. Infuse the words we recite and the prayers we offer each week with new life, vigor and meaning. Let our worship of You be filled with awe, with joy, with thanksgiving. Amen.
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