I read and reposted a link to words from Mike Slaughter yesterday.
His Twitter account offered this little bit:
@RevMSlaughter: How many grandparents would give their lives 2 save grandchildren but won't give up their style of worship to reach them?
This Tweet hit me hard in several places. My first reaction was simply to say, "Yes! Way to stick it to them." And then it occurred to me that I don't even preach or teach that way right now.
I have come to realize that so many of us worship so differently from one another, and that we need different things to help us focus our attention on God. Some of it goes to the models of Multiple intelligences. Some of it goes to the fact that we in the church did such a good job of sorting for Sunday School through the years, that we made it an imperative that everyone have their own little group, and that the groups shall not blend. We sent kids off to kids worship, and youth off to youth worship, and then when they became young adults we wondered why they didn't stick around.
We had told them they were not a part of us, and we had not taught them why we worship why we do. In fact, I would offer that we don't even know why we worship the way we do. It is comfortable for us to worship in the ways that we do. Some of us do so because we came from a generation where we followed orders, and learned to find meaning in following orders. Some have learned to live with the worship style because the people we worship with are so very dear to us. Others worship in their own style in the midst of some other style.
When we do come to an understanding of why we worship in the way that we do, we still do not do a good job of explaining it so that others can hear and understand, and even participate. So how do we make the method of worship as clear as the reason we worship - to praise God, and give Glory to the King.
I think that when we do this, we will find ways to make worship relevant to all, and more importantly in my book find ways for all to come to worship, be together, and be the Triumphant Church, before we pass into the Church Triumphant (Church Triumphant, meaning together with those who have died, which would in turn mean that we have died [just practicing]).