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Preparing for worship

Several folks have suggested we take the final few minutes before our Sunday service to quietly prepare our hearts for worship. I really like this idea, and here’s why.

Bob Kauflin, in his book Worship Matters, says,
In the Bible, when various people encountered God’s presence, they were never flippant or casual. At Mount Sinai the Israelites ‘were afraid and trembled, and they stood far off’ (Ex. 20:18). Seeing God’s throne, Isaiah cried out, ‘Woe is me! For I am lost; for I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts!’ (Is. 6:5). When John encountered the risen Christ in his vision of heaven, he ‘fell at his feet as though dead’ (Rev. 1:17).

Reverence is essential to worship. Because ‘our God is a consuming fire,’ we are to ‘offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe’ (Heb. 12:28-29).

It’s not natural on Sunday morning to approach the Lord with reverence and awe. We won't do it if we slip in late or let our minds are passive. Sleeping in, rushing about, scarfing down breakfast, getting ourselves and the kids ready, finalizing ministry plans, driving to church. All of these can distract us from approaching the Lord with reverence and awe. I’m convinced that Satan doubles his efforts on Sunday mornings to get us anxious and flustered – anything to keep our minds off Christ.

So, to better prepare our hearts before the Lord, we encourage you starting this Sunday to take the final minutes before our service to focus and quietly prepare yourself for worship. You may find it helpful to open your Bible, bow your head, and use the A-C-T-S method of prayer: A – adoration and praise to God through Christ. C – confession of your sin before Him. T – thanksgiving for who God is, His past acts, and His future promises. S – supplication for the Spirit to bless our worship leaders, our order of service, and all attenders this morning.

So join us this Sunday in the sanctuary. Anticipate the great privilege we have of encountering God’s presence. Please do enjoy great fellowship with your church family before and after the service. But at 10:25, let’s all do our best to be in our seats, preparing our hearts to encounter a holy God.


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