195 – Going to Worship or Going to Church
#FaithBites #FaithJourney Worship
Faith, God, Religion, Church, Worship. All of these words can be used interchangeably but they are very different. Today I asked a question on Facebook to those who worship regularly on what you do when you can’t worship. I didn’t use the word church but most assumed that worshiping means going to church. Many stated they do a mini service at home or a devotional or something like that.
While the answers helped on another project, it really got me thinking about the word Worship. A director of Christian education told me that she says we are going to worship, not going to church. A church can be a building, a church can also be a people. Worship is the act.
Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary defines worship as both a noun and a verb. The noun is defined as “the feeling or expression of reverence and adoration for a deity” while the verb is “show reverence and adoration for a deity; honor with religious rites.
The noun clearly doesn’t include a church necessarily, the verb get’s close with “honor with religious rites”. The question though is not where you worship, but how you worship.
I personally love going to Church to be part of a community. I also worship daily through prayers, meditation, and reading the word. Is there a right way or wrong way to worship?
Scripture on Worship
- Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. – Deuteronomy 6:5
- not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching. – Hebrews 10:25
Praise God in his sanctuary, praise him in his mighty heavens.
Praise him for his acts of power; praise him for his surpassing greatness.
Praise him with the sounding of the trumpet, praise him with the harp and lyre,
praise him with timbrel and dancing, praise him with the strings and pipe,
praise him with the clash of cymbals, praise him with resounding cymbals.
Let everything that has breath praise the Lord.
Praise the Lord. – Psalm 150
As our verses above show, we should gather together to worship the Lord. At the same time, we can worship anywhere, any time, and at any place. We are to praise God in his sanctuary and praise him everywhere. I think part of the issue with faith and religion is they are tied to a specific church building. For some, if they aren’t comfortable in a specific church, they lose faith or don’t worship.
God’s house has many rooms, you need to find the one that you are most comfortable in. Worshiping as God’s people and belonging is an amazing feeling. At the same time, you can worship in many ways. It could be in a church, in a small group. a devotion, your nightly prayers, blessings over dinner with family. How you worship is your personal connection to the Lord. As in life, variety is awesome. To steal the quote about Chicago and change it: Worship early and Often.
Think about how and when you worship if you do. Where do you worship and with whom? Then think about different ways you may worship the Lord that are pleasing. Are there ways to invite others to worship with you? If you don’t worship often or at all, think about why that may be. Is it because you haven’t found a room that feels right?
I have found the room in God’s house that is right for me. I will continue to worship in many different ways with the help of God.