A few days ago, I found some notes on my computer containing some words from Karen Burton Mains. Mrs. Mains wrote these well-phrased admonitions about worship in the preface of the hymnbook, Sing Joyfully:
“Worship has been defined as being preoccupied with God. How do we learn to become preoccupied with God? By cultivating intentionality. By deliberately turning our minds toward divine preoccupation. By developing worship habits and working on them. Intentional worship means a worshipper is not going to church expecting that worship will just happen; but intentionality means that a worshipper is going to church determined to make worship happen.
A church bulletin aptly (said): ‘Too many Christians worship their work, work at their play, and play at their worship.’ We must learn to work at our worship so that preoccupation with God becomes delightfully habitual.
We must remind ourselves, over and over, that the focus of Sunday worship must be upon the living Christ among us. In truth, if Christ were bodily present and we could see him with more than our soul’s eyes, all our worship would become intentional. If Christ stood on our platforms, we would bend our knees without asking. If He stretched out His hands and we saw the wounds, our hearts would break; we would confess our sins and weep over our shortcomings. If we could hear His voice leading the hymns, we too would sing heartily; the words would take on meaning. The Bible reading would be lively; meaning would pierce to the marrow of our souls.
If Christ walked our aisles, we would hasten to make amends with that brother or sister to whom we had not spoken. We would volunteer for service… If we knew Christ would attend our church Sunday after Sunday, the front pews would fill fastest, believers would arrive early, offering plates would be laden with sacrificial but gladsome gifts, prayers would concentrate our attention.
Yet … Christ is present.
I would say these are very interesting thoughts from Mrs. Maines.
Just some thoughts,