Recently it seems that there is this intense urge to define the correct way to worship the Lord. I have written on this topic before, but I want to get a few things out there and off my chest. I am not someone that claims to have all the answers, but this debate or argument is really starting to get on my nerves. Somewhere the Lord we worship, has taken a back seat to how we worship Him. Anyone out there that wants to correct me, can. I will not be offended if you can truly demonstrate to me where the “How” is defined.”
The “Who” is clearly laid out for us in Scripture. That is not a hard thing to find, but I have not been able to find a clear cut, definition of what should be considered the correct way to “have church”. My stance on the matter is one that follows a line of thought that “church” was never meant to be tangible. The Church is the body of believers. That is what it was meant to be, but somehow along the way we have turned it into something we do as opposed to something we are. The Church is supposed to active and the collection of believers acting in a manner that glorifies God.
So I am stuck in this quandaray of why does the body seem to enjoy fighting over how to worship Him. There are many camps in the fight. There are those that want to have the traditional Sunday service and that is fine with me. As long as that service is drawing you closer to the Lord and is leading you to walk closer to Him. If the Sunday service works for you and allows you to function in a better relationship to Him, then great. But if that service is just a matter of going through the motions and you are in no way, shape, form or fashion being drawn closer to the Lord and encouraged by what you hear, then you might want to rethink things. If that service or your preacher does not encourage your walk, then there is something that is missing.
On the opposite side you have what is sometimes called the emergent movement or the home church movement. The theory here is that, one does not need to have a pastor or operate in a business model of one man speaking and teaching the other men. The theory here is that the Lord has given equally to all His followers so they should be able to gather and function without the confines that the traditional church can sometimes impose. This group also holds that the members of the body should take care of the others members of the body. Many argue that this is the way that the first century church functioned, thus making it the way Christ intended His Church to interact. This can be true, but there was a large degree of persecution against Christ Followers, so some of that might have played a hand in the home meetings as opposed to continuing a tradition of meeting in Snagogues.
Again, I say to you, if this helps you draw closer to Him, then this model works for you. If you feel that you have something to share and are willing to step out on that ledge, then by all means continue to work in this manner. But this model is not without its pitfalls and perils too. I have witnessed some of the same situations in these house meetings as there are in the big churches. There can still be an air of “everything is hunky-dorey” with me and no real sharing of life. There can be an unseen “pastor” figure.
But in my mind the biggest problem that both the groups share is that in some groups it appears that the “How” is far more important than the “Who”. I have read literature (if you can call it that) from all sides of this debate and they all seem to say that their methodology of how to meet is the right one. I tend to see it a little differently. I tend to say that the “How” should not matter. If I meet in a traditional church and you meet in your home, but we both are striving to follow Christ in our daily walks, what should keep us from communicating and sharing life. Why do you need to convince me that my method is wrong and why should I try to convince you that your method is wrong.
The body is not about proving who is right and who is wrong, it is about supporting and loving our brothers and sisters in Christ. If you want to attack the system, that is your right and you can freely do that, but do not let that spill over into your interpretation of me, and my walk with the Lord. Let my fruit speak for itself and I will do my best to let your fruit do the same. If I choose to meet in a home with some other believers that does not discredit what the Lord is doing in my life or in the life of the others there. If you choose to meet in a more traditional setting, that does not discredit what the Lord is doing in that time either.
If we are all truly brothers and sisters in Christ when are we going to start realizing that the Lord meets us where we are. He does not pick and choose who He will and will not meet with when we call on His name. It is why the verse goes “For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them” (Matthew 18:20) and does not have anything else on it. The verse does not say two or three, but no more than 20. Nor does it say two or three but you must have an attendance of at least 500 to be blessed. It is clear that the Lord will meet with any number of people as long as their hearts on on Him and wanting to meet with Him.
It is time that we quit fighting and arguing over how we worship and focus on who we worship. Since that should be common across all believers, then we need to start building our relationships around Him and not around the fact the we do church the correct way. The correct way to do church is to BE THE CHURCH.