LEARNING THE ART OF ATTENDING CHURCH
Sometime along life’s way I read an article about how to develop and refine the “art” of attending church each week.
I agree that there is far more to know about church attendance than the average person realizes but church attendance that benefits the attender is something that must and can be learned and constantly developed to be effective.
There are certainly several categories of churchgoers. How about those who attend Sunday Morning worship out of habit, those who attend because a sense of community and friendships and finally, those who attend expecting and receiving an encounter with God. Personally I am determined that the last category is the one I want to be.
But as we work to refine the “art” of getting the most out of church attendance, here are 7 recommended steps to weekly church going success.
- Beginning each Saturday night prepare yourself for church the next day. Get your bath, select your clothing, try to follow a specific routine on Saturday night so that your Sunday morning will not be filled with pressure and haste. Also try going to bed a little earlier than usual, you’ll find the extra rest beneficial.
- Arise early enough on Sunday morning to give yourself, and your family a calm and unhurried journey to the Lord’s house. This step is not easy but if it is put into practice over and over it will eventually become a natural occurrence.
- Try to attend church with a clear purpose in mind. It may be to rid your heart of fear, anger, bad emotions or many other things. As you journey through your personal life, changes will happen each week, so your purpose in hearing from God will change as well.
- Ask God to speak to your heart in a clear and definite way as you attend church. He may speak to you in a song or a sermon. It may also come from a scripture read within the service or a Bible Study group or even in a time of silence before Him. When you are in His house with His people, His voice often becomes clearer to your heart.
- Carry your Bible with you. I know we have iPhones, iPads and who knows what additional contraptions that have Bible apps, but there is nothing like holding your own personal copy of God’s Word. It will contain your personal study notes, marked scriptures etc., that enhance your Christian life.
- Leave the thoughts of the world and its troubles on the church steps and enter the building focused on the fact that God loves you and wants to meet you there. It’s almost impossible to worship with a cluttered mind.
- Don’t watch your watch! Don’t try to put God on a clock. Yes, the music may be long, the sermon longer, but you are there for an encounter with the Spirit of God and not just to fulfill a weekly obligation or fill up an hour to help a guilty conscience.
Anything worthwhile takes a little time and so does effective worship!
I challenge you to try these steps for at least 4 Sundays in a row and I believe you will discover the real “joy” of attending Church.
Dr. Richard Lee
There’s Hope America