Lately, due to my wife’s health, we have been visiting a different church. Originally, we were conducting church in our house, but the one thing that was missing, was community. We decided to visit a smaller church. Due to my wife’s migraines, that she has had for the past 5 months, we needed to find a place to gather and worship that was not so loud and bright.
Now they conduct church different than the norm. There is no loud bands or video presentations, or people talking and carrying on hundreds of different conversations. This is a small community, of faithful God fearing people wanting to learn more about the Scriptures than what is preached at the pulpit, or discussed in the 1 hour (really 30 or 45 min) Sunday school class. They set out folding chairs in a small room. There is no pulpit. They have hymnals spaced about on about every other chair. They use their hymnal and select songs that have been on their heart. There is not one person selecting songs, it is a community choosing songs. Either before or after each song selected, the person that chose the song, expresses why they chose that song. Usually it is due to being their favorite, or it is because sometime during the week or lately, that song has touched their heart during a situation in their life. They pray, and then they discuss scripture. Yes, there is someone who is leading the discussion. But he is not there to state how it applies to him but all understand there is one meaning and many applications. So we get to hear the different applications that pertain to that different part of scripture. There is no time limit on the discussion. Then they pray over prayer requests that are shared and eat together afterwards. Keep in mind, there is no nursery, or children’s church. These are families, gathering as families, to share life and scripture.
I was really concerned more about what my teen children were thinking about the whole gathering. Come to find out they enjoyed it. They stated that they do not walk away confused but understand the scripture better, because they here different perspectives to the application of scripture. This allows them to hear from different people, mainly adults, on how they have applied scripture to their lives in order to glorify God.
We may one day go back to the ‘normal’ style of worship, but right now, as a family, we are thoroughly enjoying gathering with fellow believers and sharing life through scripture.