What is your default worship service greeting? “Good morning! Let’s all stand and worship!” That’s the one I use when I haven’t thought of anything else to say. There is actually nothing wrong with it, but it’s the lazy way out.
You know the pet phrases that your preacher uses. These are words that have become meaningless clichés over the years. He may genuinely feel deeply about them; however, because of repetition, they no longer carry the weight they once did. When words and actions lose their meaning to our congregations, they go on autopilot. None of us want that.
The same is true about you and the worship greetings/ clichés you use.
What if you actually wrote down your opening comments for this Sunday’s worship service?
Take 15 minutes and memorize something that focused, fresh, meaningful and biblical.
Constance Cherry in her excellent book, “The Worship Architect,” says,
“God is calling us out of the world, saying, ‘It’s time! I’m here!’ God is gathering us from our homes and our busy schedules to come and experience the divine-human encounter. That God is seeking us is the crux of the gathering. Jesus made it clear that it is the Father who is seeking worshiper (John 4:23).”
Reminding worshipers about that foundational truth may change the spirit of the entire worship service. We just need to think of new ways of telling them what the service is all about.
Here is what I said this past weekend at the beginning of the worship service: “Good morning everyone! God says that He inhabits the praises of His people. So, I picture God pulling up a chair and sitting in this room with us and listening to our praise with a big smile on his face. With that picture in mind, and realizing that we are the choir and he is the audience, let’s get on our feet and pour out our hearts in praise.”
It took less than 30 seconds, but it planted a word picture in the minds of the congregation that may have affected the way they worshiped God.
I’m challenging myself to do this for the next month – hopefully it will become a habit. Why don’t you try it and let me know how it went?
Let’s keep each other accountable.