Saturday, February 13, 2010

Change pt. 3, The Sanctuary

The last one of the series, just something else to think about.

Why do you worship in the place you do? At our church, the service I attend is in the gym. And many people do not attend it because it's in a gym, not the sanctuary and as we all know, God only exists in the sanctuary.

Let's start with the word. Sanctuary means "a sacred or holy place". Now comes the big question. Do we decide what will be holy and tell God to meet us there? I mean, really. We build a church, we make a big room everyone can fit in, write "Sanctuary" on the blueprints and now we know that room will be holy? Or...

Do we meet with God every week together in one place, singing songs of praise to Him, praying together, learning from God's Word together in a certain room and by doing this we have moments in which we experience God's holiness and thereby the place becomes holy? And going with our theme the last few days, because we had a holy experience in that room, does that mean other people will just because we did? Are we forcing others to worship where we did how we did hoping it will rub off on them or are we gearing what we do to focus on the new person and how they can meet with God?

Think of your home. At my house as a kid, my mom prayed every morning in the family room in the basement. For her it was a holy place. For me, it was where I watched TV. No holiness whatsoever. Now, my mother could have forced me to treat it as holy and only pray there too, but she let me find God where I was at. Which do you think would have worked out better?

So if you find God in the Sanctuary, great. But I don't. I have been worshipping in the gym for 4 years. I have been leading students in worship there for almost 6 years. And just because it worked for me doesn't mean it will for someone else. But on the flip side, just because the Sanctuary worked for you doesn't mean it will for someone off the street. Go back to the comfortable thing. You're new, you follow the herd into the biggest room with the instrument playing you never hear, sitting on hard pews only where others say you can sit (because that spot is so-and-so's), the pastors wearing robes (which you see where else in your life?), and if no one says "hi" to you or tries to make you feel welcome, are you going to come back to give this spot a second chance at holiness?

Again, no right answers, this will all be very subjective. The question is what subject are we thinking about, ourselves or someone we want to introduce Christ to...?


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