lørdag 23. mars 2019

What is relevant worship?

If we look at churches that are experiencing growth – one of the qualities is that people attend because they find the worship relevant (2). If I made an open survey and asked people what relevant worship is, I am sure that I would get a wide range of answers. I suppose that age, cultural background, expectations, relationships, balance between being a receiver and a contributor will be some of the factors that would influence the response.

I believe it is important to plan worship with all these factors in mind. However, we should never forget the words of Jesus:

“God is spirit, and the people who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.”
John 4:24
I live in a culture that is different from where I grew up. In many ways I am not culturally relevant at all. I cannot pretend to be Moldovan, Georgian or from any other culture that differs from my own. But I can be authentic and true in my worship. I can make efforts to build relationship with people I meet and I can pray that the love of Jesus will flow through me. What I can do, is to encourage people of other cultures to be authentic and true in their worship and find expressions that relates to people of their own age-group and culture.

Some years ago I had contact with people from a church with mainly young people clothed in black leather, multiple piercings and chains. I couldn’t relate to their style, but I was at home in their passion.

For several years I was involved in a huge Christian Sport Network in Norway. What they had in common was that they were young, active in sports and had a Christian faith. For more than a decade they called the same retired ‘old’ pastor (1) as one of the main speakers to a summer-camp that gather many hundred young people. The reason: The pastor was authentic, true and full of passion in his communication. He was a bringer of life.

‘Manna’ for today:

Authenticity, love and life are relevant in all cultures.
(1) Edin Løvås (1920-2014) always relevant because of authenticity, love and life!
(2) General Brian Peddle's 'Call to Mission' NOW includes: 
A CALL TO WORSHIP: We should celebrate God’s redeeming love through our worship, seeking culturally-relevant ways to join together in praise and thanks, as we reach out to and welcome people.

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