“And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.”
The other night, between my daughter’s dance practices, I decided to share with her some of my moves. She wasn’t impressed. I can’t really blame her. I’ve always believed my enthusiasm could make up for whatever I lacked in natural rhythm. Apparently not.
Dejected, I went for an evening run. There, I found my rhythm. The beat, beat, beat of my movement down the street just felt….right. I still couldn’t dance. I still can’t clap to the beat. But, on my run, something deep in me was reminded that my soul needs rhythm.
Maybe that is why music speaks to us. We are hardwired for rhythm. It is in our DNA, because we are created in the image of God, and He wove rhythms into the structure of creation. Work/Rest….Work/Worship. There, in His design for the week, He has established for us a holy rhythm. Yes, all of life is to be worship, but He has set apart the Sabbath to be a special day of worship. When we abandon His rhythm, our lives can quickly get off beat.
There is more to this rhythm than merely individual work and individual worship, though. It is a rhythm of work, and corporate worship. We worship together, as the people of God, because God has ordained us to live, and worship, in communion with one another. And in His Word, He tells us what our hearts know to be true…something is missing when we neglect to meet with one another. Something is missing in the heart of the one who is not in worship. Something is missing in the heart of the one worshipping, who does not have his brother or sister with him.
In Genesis 2:18, the Lord God made an astounding statement. “It is not good that the man should be alone.” If you connect that statement with God’s mandate for man to work and keep the garden (which I do), and if you connect that mandate to God’s ultimate call for man to worship (which I do), you begin to see that man cannot worship alone.
I pull all of this together to point out that God has blessed man with a calling to worship together, with the people of God, and that He has woven into the fabric of our lives a weekly rhythm of work and corporate worship. This rhythm is life giving. It feeds our souls. Through it, we receive the blessing of God.
Friends, I want to encourage you, particularly as we enter in to the summer months…do not forsake weekly worship with the people of God. Do not miss out on this divine rhythm. Please know that I do not write to heap guilt and shame. Shame comes from Satan. It does not come from the Lord, as He so clearly reminds us in Romans 8:1, “There is therefore now NO condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.”
We are not keeping attendance rolls. We are not making a list and checking it twice. We/I merely want the blessing for you. I also want this blessing for your church family. We miss you when you are not here, because our family is not whole.
There are a multitude of really good reasons to miss worship on Sunday. Those are fine. Do not feel pressured. But, know the difference between those good reasons, and simply skipping the beat. After all, there really is something beautiful that happens when we find our rhythm.