Monday, March 27, 2006

Worship Surprise

Last night we had our Mexico presentation to the congregation. The college students sang songs, led prayers, and service at the table. I gave the lesson.

I changed things up a bit from the norm, and I got a tremendous response that I was not expecting. Honestly, in my mind, I didn't think that things were changed up that much. I speak in Spanish for about 5 minutes before my lesson, but we sang a song in Spanish, I led a prayer in Spanish, and then I read a passage in Spanish. This might have loosened people up more than I thought it would. Also, we didn't have our normal closing prayer, I led a benediction. I guess you can call these things, little surprises in worship that allow God to show up.

People came up to me telling me that they felt so refreshed during the services. I can only praise God for this and thank Him, because he was the one who came near them during the service. It would be easy for me to say, "I did this." But this is really far from the truth. That is why I tell these people, "Praise God" and "Thank you for your encouragement."

This just confirms something that I already know (and our elders do least somewhat): our worship services need a little help. I will probably be posting more thoughts on this matter, but I need to be clear. While I addmitedly and wrongly think it is solely up to the worship committee to do all the helping, the help is not going to be in manufacturing some fantastic service that wows the crowd. It is going to be in a revival of God's people. It is going to be in God's real presence being made known in our worship services. It is going to be by God's power that our worship services are revived. With this, I offer a prayer.

Heavenly Father, help me to grow in my compassion for helping people experience your presence in their lives. Use me as an instrument to revive the souls in our congregation. Use me to pump your Spirit into our college students. I don't know how you will do this, but let me know what you want me to do. Teach me to compassionately pray for others. Amen.

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