Content to Sit

Forgive me for the delay in posting – it has been a consuming month.

My family and I have been a part of a church plant the past three years. November 2, 2008 was our last Sunday at that church. On November 9, 2008 we visited a different church in our area…and it was so sweet. I felt so welcomed and at home, and really no one did anything out of the ordinary to make me feel that way. In fact I think that is the reason I felt so comfortable. Folks just came up to us and welcomed us and spoke with us and made us feel at ease. As worship began, I realized what made the difference. The focus of the morning was not on the “visitors.” The focus was on Christ, on worshipping God. Of course people recognized that there were visitors present – but I knew that they were in no way catering to me. It really put me at ease to know that things did not revolve around me being there, but everything revolved around the presence of God being there.

Don’t we tend to treat visitors at worship services as if everything depended on them being there…as if the reason why we had a worship service to begin with was so that they would show up. I think that actually has the opposite effect than what is often intended. We want to make folks feel welcomed and as though they really mattered and so we go way overboard on trying to create that kind of atmosphere. What ends up happening though is that the visitor now becomes uncomfortable instead of welcomed. I felt welcomed and at ease and comfortable because the focus wasn’t on me, it was clearly on Christ and worshipping him.

For the first time in 3 years I got to sit with my wife and my children and sing to the LORD with them at my side. This is so unusual that when the musicians began to play at the beginning of the service, my son and daughter both said to me, “Daddy, you better get up there! Daddy, you need to go up there!” But I didn’t need to go up there. Actually, I realized sitting there with my family that Christ was going to be worshipped in that place if I was up on stage or not or if I was in the congregation or not. That was a great feeling – to be content to sit with the church and know that what really mattered was not my visiting the church, but the person of Christ being worshipped by the church.

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4 comments so far

  1. Kim on

    Well said. We concur.

    Now, get busy with more posting. Cause, I know you’ve got some free time 😉

  2. Jenn on

    Glad to sit with you!

  3. kristin pettit on

    will be praying for God’s direction for your family

  4. Robin Leonard on

    Praying for you as you look for God’s direction!
    Love you all –
    Robin


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