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The Worship Wars

I've a new pet peeve. It has to do with choosing which church you want to go to. And this has happened at least twice since we've been at our current church. Here's how the conversation goes:

Me: "We'd sure love to have you come to our church sometime. The people there are just wonderful, and they were that way before we got here! We're very centered on Christ and His gospel. My husband loves to study and preach the Bible. We're doing a scripture memory program with the kids on Sunday nights, too. And Vacation Bible School is just around the corner."

Them: "Oh yeah...they're very nice at your church. But I gotta tell ya, I can't worship God when I only sing hymns with just a piano. And no overhead projector or power point... I mean, I want to raise my hands, dance around a little...and well, you guys just don't do that."

There may be a kernal of truth in that last statement. We don't do that. But it's not because all of us don't think we should...in fact, when I sit in the back row and I sing, "In Christ Alone" or "All Hail the Power of Jesus' Name" I do raise my hands. But I have to respect that others worship in a different way. Some people are very private and reserved, prefering to praise more quietly.

My point is that worship style is NOT something by which you decide if you should attend a certain church. Ask this instead:

Does the preacher treasure Christ and preach Him crucified for sinners? Is he a godly man who loves people?

Does the congregation seek to grow in their love for God and each other?

Do the songs lift up God, or could you insert your boyfriend's name instead of Jesus' and the song would mean the same thing?

Saying you CAN'T worship God somewhere implies that the worship is for you and your preferences, not just for God alone.

4 comments:

I'm with you on this - glad to hear ya'll aren't what my husband jokingly calls, "happy-clappy". It's a hard sell in today's society to convince people that worship isn't about them, but about God. I try to be understanding though - if the shoe were on the other foot, I could never feel at home in a church with movie screens and a band. I think it can be done in a Biblical way, Christ centered, just like our more traditional service, but I just don't like it. I guess I'm just as bad as everybody else!

April 29, 2007 at 9:03 PM  

Amen, Sister! And worship is not just singing songs. It is SO much more than that.

April 29, 2007 at 10:15 PM  

I have my preferences, too, and i've been to a church that used purple lights and hazers (smoke machine!) on Sunday morning and I left with a headache, but I still felt like I could worship God there. And I think worship can be a factor among many others when you're choosing a place of worship. What bothers me most is when a preferance becomes the SOLE determing factor.

April 30, 2007 at 8:59 AM  

So sad. Flavor of the week. And there is always the next church which will be serving the good coffee and having hipper music...

April 30, 2007 at 4:51 PM  

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