Worship (noun): reverence offered a divine being or supernatural power; also : an act of expressing such reverence
I have lost my ability to worship well. Or maybe I never had that ability. I attended Sunday School from the time I was in preschool until high school, but never attended actual church services much. My family was not a church-going family. For some reason (perhaps to make us better people?), my mother sent us to Sunday School every week. She dropped us off and picked us up, but never attended church herself. In fact, religion was often something that was a negative in my family. The religious conservatives were seen as destroying politics and infringing on others’ rights. But, still, she took me to Sunday School each week. I loved Sunday School. I loved the stories and the activities and the songs and the friends. I went to Jr. High nights and played hide and go seek in the big, somewhat scary church. I went to parties at the youth pastor’s house in high school, feeling like one of the cool kids, hanging out with the worship band. But, I was never in the worship band. I didn’t sing well enough to sing loud and proud at Sunday School. I always felt a little like I wasn’t sure what I was doing with all the people who knew God. I mean, really knew God and worshipped him well. I felt somewhat like a fraud. I felt like God was out there, but just out of my reach. I talked to Him a lot. But, I never heard back. So, I figured I was doing it wrong.
Now, I’m an adult. And Sunday School isn’t really a thing anymore (although, my days of volunteering in my DD’s Sunday School class and at VBS in the summer have been some of my best days at church). I struggle to get motivated to go to Church on a regular basis. I no longer have the youth group to hang out with and I don’t have close friends or even close acquaintances that go to my Church. And so, when I go, I feel like I don’t know what I’m doing. I see people holding their hands up to God as they sing. I hear beautiful, haunting voices that speak of God’s gifts with their beauty and tone. There are still stories and singing, but I feel like I am missing some necessary tools. And so I try to find my way to worship.
And so I try to find my way to worship. I try taking notes in a notebook. I try following along in my Bible. I try just sitting and taking it all in. I try getting involved. I try volunteering. I try it all and still I feel like I’m on the outside of God’s building, tapping on the window, but never getting anyone’s attention. So, I figure I must be worshipping wrong. And I keep seeking. But, maybe…just maybe, God is speaking to me in all the ways that are unexpected and sometimes unwanted and very much unexplainable. Perhaps worshipping isn’t about the gifts we HAVE, but the gifts we are open to receive. And perhaps, what I’ve been doing wrong all along is not the way I’m worshipping but the way I’m NOT worshipping. Perhaps, like most all things in my life, the worshipping is about the follow-through, not being the best or doing it right, but just, plain doing it.
I will be honest. That was a little more than five minutes. But, it felt good to get that out. It definitely wasn’t where I planned to go. But, that is the beauty of the Five Minute Free Write!