Monday, September 8, 2014

Personal Worship, Corporate Benefit

 
Is it true that our everyday life is separate from our church, Sunday life? Think again. Because worship is a lot like eating.  It's personal.  What goes in is who we become.  What's been ingested is evident to others, lacking the details.  Worship and eating are both private and corporate practices.

After a piano offertory a gentleman approached me and asked, “Do you ever play for just you?"

"Of course.”  

"I thought so," he said with a smile.

When each of worships God personally, our corporate worship becomes richer, fuller, deeper.  One of my friends prays Scripture passionately, especially the Psalms. Her words are tinged with heartfelt humility, rising, falling, tapering to silence.  Before she completes a petition, my eyes and face are moist. My heart is more satisfied than before; I have experienced God differently through her love and expression than my own.

Regardless of how we minister in our local churches, when we come having set aside self, God is revealed in a powerful, personal way through His Word. What thoughts or Scriptures aid you in personal worship and ministry? They’re not yours for keeps, they’re yours to share.

 I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called,  with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love,  endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.  There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism;  one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all. 
But to each one of us grace was given according to the measure of Christ’s gift.  Therefore He says:
“When He ascended on high,
He led captivity captive,
And gave gifts to men.”
(Now this, “He ascended”—what does it mean but that He also first descended into the lower parts of the earth?  He who descended is also the One who ascended far above all the heavens, that He might fill all things.)
And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers,  for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ,  till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ; that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting,  but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head—Christ—  from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love. (Ephesians 4:1-16)

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