Preparing Your Heart for Worship - March 11, 2018
As we finish Romans 12, the checklist turns outward in its focus without setting aside how we are to love one another genuinely. As we always seek to live out the gospel in the details of our daily lives, what we’ve seen so far is that it should not only impact how we live together (in faith, love, and unity) but also be evident in how we relate to those outside the Body.
What a joy it’s been to walk through the Catechism together! To see our children learning Christian doctrine and not just learning it, but memorizing it has been so great. Even my three year old asks to do catechism each evening. I know that the concept and idea of a catechism is still new and different to many, but the Christian community has used the catechism as a method of teaching biblical doctrine to children for hundreds of years and I look forward to seeing the impact it has not just on our children in the years to come, but also to our entire church.
Call to Worship
It is God Himself who calls us to worship. In the Scriptures we read, “Make a joyful noise to the Lord,” and “Serve the Lord with gladness.” In writing these Holy Spirit inspired words, the Psalmist is speaking for God as He calls His people to worship. When we begin our time together with a call to worship we are not inviting God to be present, he is inviting us to “Come into His Presence.” He calls us to turn away from all of our preoccupations, join our hearts and minds as His people, and exalt Him together.
Hosanna (Praise is Rising) and Praise Him Praise Him
As we begin our time together, these two songs are a great declaration of the reason we have gathered - to praise and exalt our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!
Prayer of Praise
This prayer reflects, let by one of our men, is intended to engage our minds in praising God. As the prayer concludes, when we all say “Amen” we’re voicing our agreement with the one who is leading us. We’re saying, “YES, we’re here to praise Him together!”
Bringing Tithes and Offerings
During the month of March, through Resurrection Sunday, we’re taking an additional offering for the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering. While we do give to this fund year round through our regular tithes and offerings, we set a goal of giving $5,000 over and above our regular tithes to missions in North America. Churches from Canada to the U.S. to Mexico (including the Church @ Affton) benefit from this offering.
We sang this song a couple of weeks ago. The words of this song are a wonderful expression of what the cry of our heart should be in response to what Paul writes in Romans. Be sure and listen to the tune and read the lyrics a few times. I’m really looking forward to singing this song with everyone again this Sunday.
In Christ Alone
As we prepare to dig into Romans 12, we need to always remember that the foundation of what we’re studying is the first 11 chapters of Romans. Romans 12:12 says to “rejoice in hope,” and this song is a wonderful expression of where our hope is found.
Sermon: A Manual for the Christian Life, part 2, Romans 12:9-21
Read through Romans 12:9-21 several times between now and Sunday morning and think through the “checklist” that it presents. Think about how you might follow the commands of this passage in the details of your daily life.
Blest Be the Tie that Binds
This song, written in 1782 by John Fawcett (who wrote over 100 hymns), beautifully expresses the unity that we have in Christ and how it should be lived out in the life of the Body. Many of the ideas and commands of Romans 12 are found in this song.
Be Praying for:
• Rex, the worship team, and choir as they prepare to lead us musically this Sunday.
• Pray that we all come together on Sunday with hearts prepared to engage in intense, focused exaltation of God.
• Pray that we are obedient to God’s commands and strive for the unity He desires of us.
• Pray for me as I prepare to preach God’s inspired, inerrant, sufficient, authoritative Word.