Here at Christ UMC as well as other churches and faiths, worship is central to our lives. It is the opportunity to praise, grow, belong, and find connections with God's presence. It has been more than a little bit important in my life. I think worship is the primary experience that caused me to change from my childhood Baptist faith to the Methodist experience. For those who haven't heard my story, I started piano lessons at age seven and by my early teens was helping in small groups in my childhood church. Then my brother-in-law's Methodist church was desperate for an organist. So, at sixteen I took the job - five dollars per Sunday. Worship as a child, young adult, middle and older adult has always been a key to who I am.
Even though worship together is critical , this week I'd like to show you a few ways worship can bless you outside the worship services in a sanctuary or chapel. For many years Methodists have published what is called the "Book of Worship". It is designed mostly for those who plan worship, usually pastors or worship leaders. The most recent one was published in 1992 and still has some useful material as well as some that seem dated. I want to mention a few ideas that you might consider.
Blessings of a Home, especially one you have just moved into, will make a good start to life in the space asking God to bless all that happens there. I have led several of these including two here at Christ UMC. It can be fun if you make it a gathering of family and friends with snacks. Or it can be just for those who live there.
Renewal of Wedding Vows is maybe more familiar. I officiated one of those last summer and it was very special. Something to consider as you reach a milestone together.
Many other items in the Book of Worship provide mostly just a prayer or maybe a few scripture suggestions rather than a more service-like worship. But one might be helpful to your life. Some deal with several types of healing and illness. Others are prayers for life changing occasions including birthdays, new school year, graduation, engagement, unicameral, a new job, unemployment, military service, retirement, suffering, a victim or survivor of crime or oppression, the anniversary of a death. I don't want to leave out the "Longest Night Worship Service" that Pastor David provides. It brings healing to grief.
Did you know all of this? Had you thought about bringing prayer and worship into events such as these and more? It is a good opportunity to remember that God is in your life all - ALL - the time. And you can pause to remember a special event in special ways. If you might like to consider it, some do not need a pastor. But a pastor you know would be honored to help.
P.S. Christ UMC has an opportunity for
free CPR training on Feb 17 at 11:00. There are only
spots left as of this writing. Please sign up by calling the office.