How many times does Sunday morning roll around and you find your heart in a state of chaos instead of calm to worship the Lord? How many Sunday’s do you arrive at church and realize you haven’t taken the time all week to pray for your pastor or your church family? I want to share with you some simple steps we can take to prepare our hearts and the hearts of our families for Sunday morning worship to the Lord.
The hope today is to get you to understand the purpose and the mission of the local church and then to move on toward how we can proceed with some simple steps to prepare our hearts and the hearts of our families for Sunday morning worship to the Lord.
Excerpt Below from: A Crazy Idea For Sanctification: the Local Church by Rick Thomas
In it he states:
“When you read the story of how Christ built His church or how the early church poured themselves into each other, you see a different picture. Read Acts 2:42-47 about the early church. See if you can “feel” the community in that passage.
The people have all things in common. There is mutual sharing, caring, and communal intrusion into each other’s lives. It does not have the lecturer-to-student feel. It does not have the hurting isolationists with a book feel. There is a sense of transparency, vulnerability, and humility that bleeds through the passage.
Gospel-centered people have nothing to protect and nothing to hide. They have one common goal, laid out in three parts. The goal is Jesus and the pieces are,
Personal – I want to know more about Jesus.
Communal – I want to experience the life of Jesus with each other mutually.
Evangelistic – I hope to share Jesus with people who do not know Him.
The early Christians were in each other’s business. What they were doing has a far different feel than the guardedness of the average Christian today. When it comes to matters of the heart, today’s Christian prefers getting fixed in private, only to resurface later to do community with fellow believers.
The New Testament Christian was not insecure or image conscious. They came just as they were, integrated with other fellow strugglers, and mutually matured in a community. They were well aware of what was going on in the lives of those around them–including their thought lives.”
“For the majority of people, even church members, church is not the priority of their week. Too often school, work, sports, and other activities take precedence over going to church. They make the mistake of letting their time be ordered by the world, which views the weekends as a time to relax, to play sports, to stay up late and sleep in. For Christians, however, Sunday should be the most important day of the week. You should try to schedule your work, activities, get-togethers, and vacations around church. You should live by the principle that Sunday morning starts Saturday night.” ~ Ken Ramey, Expository Listening
“Wherever children are be found they are to be welcomed by Christ’s people. Christ’s people are to be more welcoming than anyone else to children. Our churches should not be places where adults cannot wait to put the children away in order to get to the adult tasks of worship. One of the scandals of so much evangelicalism is that we send people to their rooms as soon as we get to church.
Now, I’m not arguing against the utility of a nursery for infants. I’m not arguing against the appropriateness of special programs to teach children.
I am saying that when you look at a church and you look at a congregation you should see the congregation. You should see young people. You should see young couples. You should see older couples and older people. You should see those coming into the final season of their life, and you should see those in the beginning season of their life. You should see people sitting in pews who’s feet cannot touch the floor. And we should, in church, welcome the wiggling and the squirming, and we should hope that what is happening is that the Word of God is reaching those hearts in ways those children do not even recognize. They are speaking as children, they are thinking as children, they are reasoning as children, but the Word of God can reach where we cannot go. It is one of the ordinary means of grace that our children, in church with us, will hear the Word of God, and sing the songs, sing the hymns, hear the music before they can sing it. In order that they, at the right time might find their voice.”
~ Albert Mohler, Above excerpt is taken from Chapel Service from Southern Seminary on February 22, 2018. Link to the full sermon is here.
Scripture & Resources:
1 Corinthians 1:2
1 Timothy 4:13
Listen Up! by Christopher Ash
Simplify Family Worship PDF by Donald Whitney
Encouraging Your Pastor Series at Revive Our Hearts
What is a Healthy Church Member? by Thabiti Anyabwile
Simplify Your Spiritual Life: Spiritual Disciplines for the Overwhelmed by Donald Whitney
Spiritual Disciplines for the Christians Life by Donald Whitney
Habits of Grace by David Mathis
Cultivating True Christian Fellowship – (questions to print out to keep handy)
Life in Four Stages: The Wonder of Childhood – Chapel Service by Albert Mohler (Feb. 22, 2018)
Should Children Sit Through “Big Church” at Ask Pastor John
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