Every experience God gives us, every person that He puts into our lives, is the perfect preparation for a future only He can see.
- Corrie Ten Boom

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Worship vs. Attending Church

If church has been a part of your life for any length of time, you've probably done both. Sometimes we merely attend church, we are physically present, but our spirit is elsewhere. In contrast, I know that I have worshiped outside of the walls or body of the church. You know, of course, that the building isn't the church. If I learned nothing else from the 2005 fire at Crane Chapel, I learned that. While corporate worship definitely is to be a part of our lives (Hebrews 10:25) we need more than an hour or two a week of corporate worship to grow in Christ. It is also a mistake, in my opinion, to consider singing as the only (or even most prevalent) form of worship. I think that many churches called the singing portion of a church service "worship," because of ease and at some point that became part of our liturgy. That's not to say that I don't enjoy music, I do, even if my husband says that my singing is below par. lol The church I now attend actually states on its website that, "God is tone deaf when it comes to your worship. Any noise you make for Him is beautiful!" And then there is the question of movement. Even though I grew up in a tradition that moves very little during worship and lived for 5 years in the stoic MN tundra, I generally move a little. Not full out dancing, but raising hand(s), swaying, clapping, etc. are all a part of my worship style. My husband, not so much; and that's okay. 

As I said, though, music does not need to be a part of our worship. Studying or reading the Bible, praying, fasting, and loving/serving others in the name of Christ are all ways that we can worship God and they need to be a part of our lives every day. Even these, though, are just elements of worship, they can be used to worship, or they can just be going through the motions. Anything we do that helps us to encounter God and in response to Him offer your life to Him, is worship, which will inevitably draw us closer to God. 

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