Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Take Me To The Alter... or just to Olive Garden

Being a worship leader I am sometimes frustrated when it comes to closing a worship service. It's like winning the Stanley Cup (Go Red Wings!) and having everyone rush off the ice so they can get back to the lesser things of life. Can you imagine telling God we treasure him above all things only for him to find us rushing out the door on Sunday Mornings so that we can beat the line up at the Olive Garden. What ever happened to savouring Victory... to delighting in the presence of God and his people... to meditating on what the Holy Spirit has just been doing through the sermon... or to sit silently before the Lord.

In our church, we have been practicing being silent for periods of time in our worship service for corporate silent prayer. I want our people to know that Church is not an observation deck where we view all the fancy talented singers, prayers, and sermons on stage. God is the Grand Canyon of awe. He is the one our hearts so desperatly long for each and every week when we come into a corporate worship service. Every week I must fight for our peoples affections. Oh how I long for people to stick around after a service only to let what God has been speaking to them about sit for a while.

The best steaks are always the ones that have been marrinated for a while.

So, in contemplating the above I wrote a response song that I want to introduce to our congregaton. It's not a pretty song. It's a song about death. It's a response song, saying to God, "Now that I have heard Your Word, Take Me To The Alter, and kill this part of me in order that you may give me new life." For this is the only response that God delights in.

A broken and Contrite heart the Lord will not despise...

Take Me To The Alter - written by: Jonathan Seller

Take me to the Alter
Past the Gates of Pride
Into Your Courts of Mercy
For here, I must die

For this is where Your Spirit's found me
I am broken wanting more
Spirit come make me humble
Take my life, and give me Yours


Anonymous said...

Great message today. I always enjoy reading what is on your heart. Great song too! Take me to the Alter. When we ask God to do that, do we really want what He wants to show us?
I love time with the Lord, in quiet, simplicity, it is peaceful, and worshipful.

Danielle a.k.a Yellie said...

You know, this really made me think. I had someone tell me the other day that our duty to God is to be at church each Sunday to worship Him. It really made me sad to think of how many people consider coming to church once a week to be their "fulfillment of duty for the week". It really is amazing how people come in, worship, listen to the sermon and then head off to start their week again and figure they are "good with God" until the next Sunday rolls around. Hopefully someone who is stuck in this way of thinking will stumble upon your blog and realize just what it is they are doing.

Dominic said...

It is just a matter of what people hold in reverence and if they are truly reverent not just that they think that they are, but truly reverent. This is something that is key for a real revival and not us just being told what we want to hear and then saying that there is a revival in our midst.