Busted, By A Mindset
In my last blog I found myself stunned when sensing that I too am falling into the 50% group that do not necessarily “attend a church service faithfully every Sunday”. Going from five times a week of church to only two hours, if I make it, was quite a revelation.
I would like to look at the mindset of church services today. I was brought up that their redeeming quality was to prepare me to face a horrid week ahead. My strength was to come from singing hymns and listening to a sermon. Today I would like to propose that the church needs a new mentality about Sunday morning services, for it has the horse before the cart, ass-backward is you want to put it that way.
There is not much accountability to a believer on a Sunday morning, except for their financial check in the offering plate and trying to sing on key. What would happen if the Sunday service would not be worship band/clergy sermon centered but a copulation of offerings from the faithful in the congregation.
Have they been spending a quiet time with the Lord during the week? Have they been reading their own Bible? What has the Holy Spirit revealed to them during this time? Has a member of the body “ministered” to them this past week that displayed Jesus in their life? Has the Lord given then a “new song”, “a new poem”, “new” art forms, etc. that they could share? Is there a “prayer warrior” amongst the group waiting to be “unleashed”? Are there prophetically inspired people in their midst who would have words of encouragement for others? I don’t know, for the church has been so effective in hiding them well, if they are there!
What would a service be like if they were allowed to “give back to the Lord” those words, those inspirations, those insights, those “new” things on a Sunday morning? I think one would experience “life” back into the service.
It hit me the other week at church that there were over 150 people there. I had never heard one of them personally share their “salvation/born again” experience. There was no room for testimonies in the service. I didn’t know if anyone had ever been “healed”, “delivered”, nor “freed” from those things that entangled my life during the week. The church had hidden them well, for although I had gone to this church for almost fifteen years, I did not know much about the people attending.
What if people were “allowed” or “freed”, to be part of the service, actually pray for others, encourage others, share with others, become a family? Giving back to the Lord, giving to their own brothers and sisters of faith, would break down the fear and doubt of giving to those who aren’t Christians we meet every day in our lives. If the church isn’t a safe place “to practice” this among ourselves, then don’t be shocked if the people aren’t doing it outside the church’s walls.
I have sporadically experienced such a “freedom” of Sunday morning bondage in the fifty years of my Christian life, where congregations were “allowed” to share their faith, give back to the Lord and the Lord’s people during a service, and the people always left renewed, encouraged, feeling the service had somehow come “alive”.
People who are not church-goers may become one if they can identify with the many stories, gifting, ministries, etc. God’s people have to offer, and the church faithful may want to stay “expecting” God to move “amongst His people” every time they meet. Isn’t God moving in the midst of His congregation, among His people, is what it is all about?
Sunday Morning Services need a different mindset,