Worship Matters Part 5
WORSHIP MATTERS PART 5
One of my prayers for myself and for our church is that we would be a “Spirit-filled” people. Most would agree with that prayer because it is commonly understood that all Christians are called to be full of the Spirit or filled with the Spirit. This is not a command to the Pentecostals and charismatics only; it is a command to every believer in Jesus Christ. Romans 8:9 says, “Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him.” Every disciple of Jesus has the Spirit within him, but does the Spirit have you? This is the significant difference and one of the most misunderstood when it comes to Spirit filling. The Spirit of God lives within the believer and at the point of salvation, the believer has every bit of the Spirit. There is no partial payment from the Lord, but rather at the point of salvation, the Lord gives you all of Him. You are indwelled by the Spirit. Paul is talking about the Spirit of God having all of you. This is being Spirit-filled. Being filled with the Spirit allows you to walk with the Lord in obedience, serve Him sacrificially, and worship Him genuinely.
This is the part of worship that we often ignore. This is the part of worship for which we are most responsible. Paul makes this abundantly clear in Ephesians 5:18-21:
“And don’t get drunk with wine, which leads to reckless living, but be filled by the Spirit: speaking to one another in psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, singing and making music with your heart to the Lord, giving thanks always for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, submitting to one another in the fear of Christ.”
Do not get drunk with wine; instead, be filled by the Spirit. Paul answers the question that everyone would have leading up to this point. The audience knows what someone will look like when drunk on wine. They may stumble as they try to walk, become belligerent, or act out of character. So, the question must be, “What does it look like to be filled with the Spirit?” Being drunk with wine does not lead to godliness, but rather debauchery. Being filled with the Spirit leads us to the throne of grace. Paul says that the Spirit-filled person will address one another in “psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with your heart.” One of the greatest characteristics of being full of the Spirit is that you will be worshipping the Lord and drawing others in to worship the Lord as well. When you are full of the Spirit, you can’t help but worship the Lord because the dampeners of the world have been removed and the song of the Spirit inside of you can be heard clearly.
Have you ever considered your preparation for corporate worship? Here at Green Acres, we believe in the weekly gathering of God’s people. We see in scripture that we are not to forsake the gathering of God’s people. But what about the preparation? Jesus says we are to deny ourselves daily, take our cross, and follow Him. This is one of our greatest preparations for the Lord’s day as we gather together. Deny ourselves, take up our cross so that we may be full of the Spirit, and worship Him wholly. Our ability to worship the Lord has much more to do with our personal preparation than anything else that is happening at the church. Let us not only make the weekly gathering of God’s people our priority but also our preparation. Lord, let us be a Spirit-filled people who pursue you wholeheartedly.
Make plans and invite someone to join you on December 24th for our annual Christmas Eve Candlelight Service. This year will be packed with great worship from our Worship Ministry, including a full choir and full orchestra! We will also have a great kid’s element that will make it fun for the whole family. We will take the opportunity to partake in the Lord’s Supper and will also be reminded that the Light of World came to earth with Candlelight. You do not want to miss, so plan to join us at 4:00 pm or 6:00 pm on Christmas Eve, December 24th.
On Christmas Day, December 25th, we invite you to join us for worship at 10:00 am! We will only have one service that day, and we look forward to worshipping together on Christmas Day as a church family.
SHUTTLE UPDATE: We are transitioning away from shuttles in order to have better modes of transportation that are more dependable and cost-effective. In this transition, we ask that you park on our campus, not in the shopping center parking lot, so that our Parking Team can easily pick you up and get you to your destination quickly. As we make this transition, your understanding and patience will be greatly appreciated.
CHURCH-WIDE BIBLE READING PLAN! Psalm 119:25-28 says, “My life is down in the dust; give me life through your word. I told you about my life, and you answered me; teach me your statutes. Help me understand the meaning of your precepts so that I can meditate on your wonders. I am weary from grief; strengthen me through your word.” It is no secret to anyone that if you want to understand the true value of God’s Word, look no further than Psalm 119. It is filled with verse after verse on the importance of keeping and hiding God’s Word in our hearts. I invite you to join our entire church family on a two-year Bible reading plan. The plan will be available on the GABC App, or you can pick up a printed copy of the 2-year plan. Come and dig into God’s Word with us. We will begin on January 1st of 2023. There is nothing greater than a church praying together, worshipping together, and reading God’s Word together. Join in!
JOURNEYS OF PAUL TRIP: I would like to invite you to join Katie & me on an amazing journey retracing the footsteps of the Apostle Paul. The trip will be September 17-26, 2023. We will step into history and walk alongside Paul as we journey through Philippi, Thessaloniki, Berea, Athens, Corinth, Crete, Patmos, and Ephesus. The Holy Scriptures will come to life in unimaginable ways! This will be a trip of a lifetime that promises to forever change all of us! For more information on this trip, stop by our table in the foyer or visit this link.
I cannot wait to preach this Sunday as we continue our Christmas series, “The King has Come.” We will look at Isaiah chapter 9 over the next three weeks with other supplemental verses to help us understand the significance of Christ dwelling among man. This week we will study, “The Light of Christ in Darkness.” Make plans to join us and bring someone you know who needs to hear a word from the Lord.
You are loved and prayed for!