Weekly Devotion

April 14,  2024

Last Sunday we were invited by Naomi to worship God during the hour we had together. The word worship caught my attention. On Monday I was still thinking about the word “worship”. I wondered, what does it mean and how does this word express what we come to do every Sunday.

When looking at our culture and how it uses this word is often a place that helps me put this into perspective. In our culture this word worship is often used “to show a lot of love and adoration for something or someone.” When using the word worship in a religious context we use it “to honour or show reverence for a divine being or supernatural power”. In the Old Testament Genesis 18:2 and Exodus 20:4-6 use words such as “Bend over’ or “Bend down” as a gesture of respect and submission to God. With these definitions I will look at worship and congregational gatherings.

The Old Testament uses the word worship often. The New Testament rarely uses the word worship to refer to the meeting of Christians in the early church. We hear the words prayer, praise, edification and submission to God’s will as central to the meeting together of the early Church. One of the sections from 1 Corinthians 14:26 gives us a good summary of the focus we need to remember when we meet. “..When you meet together, one will sing, another will teach, another will tell some special revelation God has given, one will speak in tongues and another will interpret what is said. But everything that is done must strengthen all of you.” (NLT) This is not an exhaustive list. 1 Corinthians 12:28 expands this list. All ministry responds to God’s grace. Our task as we gather to “worship” extends to our week. The “building up” we do of the body in our once a week service empowers us to apply the truth about God in love to one another.

On a personal note, I’ve been using the Psalms, often referred to as the prayer book of the Bible, as prayers for my daily worship. There is a reason that the book of Psalms has been referred to as the prayer book of the Bible. The Psalms help us express the emotions of our lives. These are prayers of joy, confessions, uncertainty, anger hope and praise. The Psalms speak to the needs of our souls, the inner lives we often keep hidden.

Singing used to be my passion and the most natural way for me to be drawn into worship. For reasons I don’t understand, that is no longer the case. I do love to hear others sing and I enter into the lyrics in more depth than ever before. Might there a way to make the prayer book of the Bible a part of our gathering on Sundays? 
  
Written by Ethel Schroeder