Anyone who reads my blog on a regular basis knows that we attend the Saturday Service at our church (www.psmchurch.com). It is a young, growing, dynamic, non-denominational (according to me) church with charismatic/pentecostal roots. It is made up primarily of young families…I am amazed at the number of pre-school age children.
Occasionally, we attend on Sunday mornings because of Dennis’ schedule. (By the way, anyone who has been following this, Dennis has been trying to get on a better schedule because he gets off work at 9pm and this really cuts into us getting more involved at church – he recently had a job interview that went very well but he was not chosen for the position – so we will continue to pray about this as well as my lack of a job situation right now). I do not like going on Sunday mornings because it is so crowded. I like a little space when I worship and last time we went on Sunday, I was sandwiched in the middle of a row (I don’t know why I hate that so much). So Saturdays are our preference.
This Saturday night, we experienced one of the best services so far. Church necessarily isn’t an “experience” as far as I am concerned. Sure, we hope we experience God’s presences at church but church to me is more about worshipping God and serving others. Experiencing God should be EVERYDAY. Even as I write this, I acknowledge there are seasons in our walk with God that I term as “dry” when the everyday experience of God may not be there. (I think this is why Paul wrote in I Corinthians 14 about things that are edifying for the church and things that are edifying to individuals – there are times when we need to exercise those things that are personally edifying – like praying in the Spirit and singing in the Spirit; we need to participate in our own spiritual growth).
So on Saturday night I wasn’t expecting anything beyond the usual. There have been seasons in my life when attending church was the adventure…I looked forward to it; I wouldn’t dare miss it. We never knew what would happen. What would be said, what would take place. It was exciting. Exciting is good until it become the focus and the everyday is laid aside. That’s the temptation.
So what happened? Well, first I would like to say, I want to attend a church that allows God to be God. Structure is good; a time frame and a plan are good but when God begins to move, I want to follow. So the worship pastor began singing a song based on Isaiah 6: 1-8 (Hey, look it up! ). The words closely matched the text. The course was “Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord of Hosts; the whole earth is full of His glory!”. It was just pure worship for lack of a better description. It was that moment when worship isn’t about us saying anything about us…only about Him. I love songs like “I am a friend of God”, but that is making it about me, not Him. So we were enjoying this moment of declaring God’s holiness. Pastor Robin invited anyone who wanted to know God in a new way to come to the front. When everyone had made their way down we had a time of repentance (when anyone comes into the presences of a Holy God, they must realize they are NOT holy – that is why Isaiah said “Woe is me, for I am a man of unclean lips” – he recognized his lack of holiness). Then we paired off and began declaring who God is. Yes, we declared aloud who God is. Everyone had something different to say. Maybe you had to be there. Pastor Robin then preached from Isaiah 6 – he told us that he had not shared with Jacob (worship pastor) what he was planning on preaching about…the song that lead to our spontaneous worship was not “planned” to coordinate with the message, rather it was all coordinated by the Holy Spirit. Pastor Robin preached one of the best sermons I have ever heard him preach – it wasn’t one of those take note, five point messages. (So if you weren’t there then you may want to get the DVD).
I’m not sure how the Sunday services went but Saturday was just what we needed…a good dose of pure worship.