I am so fortunate to have such an awesome Pastor and be part of a "Life Changing" movement, a.k.a. "church". Yesterday's sermon was amazing and I hesitate in writing about it because I just don't think I can do it justice, but I'll try. :o)
The sermon was based on Psalm 96, and what I took home with me was "We are God's subjects, created and given the authority to live under the Kingdom of God and make a difference while we are here on earth the short time that we are."
Now, our service is sort of interactive, different than ANY Catholic mass I have attended in my lifetime and surely from any other Christian church I've visited in the past, also different from other denominations too from what I hear from others. On of the questions Kyle threw out there yesterday was "Why hasn't God fixed this?" And by this he was referring to many examples that people were giving, both locally and worldly...hunger, genocide, disease, etc. And through the back and forth between us and Kyle, the answer was quite simple and just "struck" me. If God is King, then think of ourselves as his Subjects, sent out to do His good work here on earth and make the change! Now, I'm not saying I'm going to get out there and all the sudden all of these huge issues are going to go away, but every single one of us can make a difference in one way or another.
It can be as simple as helping someone in need, dropping off a coffee to brighten someones day, inviting friends over to share a meal together, serving at your local shelter, reading to elderly in a nursing home, you get the point I think. I get extremely frustrated by people who think that service ends with just your family, it doesn't. In fact, your children and spouse are gifts to you from God. I think our mission in life is to bring them along the way reaching outside of your family, outside our your four walls, and outside of yourself. And I don't know about many of you, but when I do something for someone else, I experience such an "uplift", such joy . . . which I KNOW is from God. I think of it sort of as a hug on my heart, that's how I try to explain it to Adrianna. Those feelings that you get, "joy" can only be from God. Not all happy feelings equal joy.
We talked yesterday about joy, spontaneous joy and what that looks like. Kyle gave a great example of his sister in law watching her 1yr old little boy getting SO excited watching Shamu at Sea World , that she just started to cry. Seeing her baby boy so happy and excited, prompted tears of joy. I think we have all experienced those feelings at one point in our lives. And by seeking to be connected and "heart" intentional, we have more and more opportunity for those amazing moments.
So, is being a Christian mean that you get all dressed up on Sundays, sing songs or what most call "worshipping", hang out with your other Christian friends and then that's it? Get up on your political podiums, talk about how horrible this world is, condemn all non-followers to hell, focus on family and only family, "preach" that serving is NOT enough, you are NOT as close to God as someone who reads their Bible every single day, and stuff like that?
I FIRMLY say that is NOT what it means to be a follower of Christ.
And what about worship? Does worship mean, singing and only that? Here are some notes that I found while researching what worship mean...
"We have forgotten this simple understanding of what worship is all about. But our English language still remembers. The English word worship comes from old Anglo-Saxon word worth-ship. Worship is worthship, giving worth to God."
"Worship is not about us. It’s about God. It is an act of service that you and I do to God. It is something that we do unto God as worth-givers."
Now, I'm NOT saying you can't worship God through song, because of course you can. But in my heart, I feel that showing God's worth, is showing his love and I just don't think a song is good enough. I don't think the title "Worship Leader" should be only given to a person who gets up on a stage and sings. ANYONE can be a worship leader, get out there and serve someone, show them God's love by loving them, THAT is giving worth to God, that is "Worth-shipping" or "Worshipping" Him. By doing that, you are just as much a "Worship Leader" as that guy or gal up on stage is. :o)
I hope this post didn't come off as strong or harsh as sometimes I do, what I'm feeling as I write this is "passion". I have the passion to serve, I have the motivation to get out and show what it means to truly be a Christian, even if it looks different then the way others around here are doing it, I have the desire to be as close to God as I can be. I am proud to be one of His subjects and will do all I can to do my very best with the time I have here.
"God is King" . . . that is Adrianna's phrase for this week! :o)
Some other verses that were referenced on Sunday were:
Have a terrific Week!