Sunday, March 26
Sharing in Worship
Iím writing this devotion during the weekend of an ice storm that caused the cancelation of worship services. I am a firm believer in being ďrather safe than sorry,Ē but nevertheless I am disappointed.
Participating in worship always refreshes my energy for the week. Something about worshipping with other people makes me feel better. To me, the special experience that happens in worshipping together is one of Godís mysteries. I feel it while singing in the choir and playing in the bell choir, coming together to create a beautiful piece of music expressing our wonder and appreciation that God is with us. I am also aware of it when we as a congregation are performing the liturgy together.
Consider the bell choir. It takes each one of us playing the right notes and the director leading us in order for us to create beautiful music that honors God. We practice every week, and we work hard, but we have a good time and we create something unique. I may not have had a good day or be feeling particularly energetic before I get to practice, but I always feel better afterwards. Participating in the joint creation uplifts me, and I hope the end result adds something beautiful to the service for others. Sometimes we play better than other times, but we always try our best for each other and for God.
Knowing that I am participating in this endeavor with others who all want to create wonderful music adds to the experience. This is not something I can do alone. We need each other to create the music. Singing in the choir provides me with a somewhat different way to achieve a similar result. It is the same for the church service as a whole; we need the pastors, the attendants, the musicians, and the congregation to create the worship experience together.
Writing about the effects of these encounters made me think of the verse, ďFor where two or three meet together in my name, I am there among them.Ē (Matthew 18:20). So, while we rehearse, as well as while we worship, God is present. It must be Godís presence that renews my spirit. While I am often aware of Godís presence when I am alone, there is something about worshipping together that is different. Whatever it is, it restores and refreshes me. Writing this story has also reminded me that we are not only stewards of our own talents, but we are also stewards of the time we spend with each other and the worship experience we create together.
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