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Sunday, September 28, 2008

expectations

Tonight in Xtreme we’re having our worship night. For an hour and a half or so all we’re going to do is worship. It’s an amazing thing to crowd around the stage and with hands lifted praise God. I think one of the most important things when going into a night like this is the level of expectation. We need to have the confidence that God will move and prepare ourselves for that before we even get there. I was thinking back to the forty days before we left for camp this summer and how we witnessed some amazing things in those services. There were several nights when we had unexpected ‘worship nights’ in that all we did was worship; the schedule for the night out the window. God met us there and people’s lives were changed. We then went to camp and that first night we had the most amazing service. We did nothing but worship for two hours. Everything we had sacrificed during those forty days and the prayers lifted up concluded with that night. It exceeded my expectations and what transpired during those two hours was something that will forever be etched in my mind. So we returned from camp and I can’t help but realize that we’ve not experienced God like we did prior to and during those four days. I think our level of expectation has dropped because we’re all busy with school and work and…life. Yet we can’t just fall back into a routine and wait for camp next year before we have an encounter with God. We need to go into every service with the anticipation that God will have His way and we’ll walk out different than when we walked in. Jeremiah 29:12-13 says, “When you call on me, when you come and pray to me, I'll listen. When you come looking for me, you'll find me. "Yes, when you get serious about finding me and want it more than anything else, I'll make sure you won't be disappointed" (Message). When we ask God to do something, He promises to move so if we want to experience Him, all we have to do is ask.

Today’s side of laughter is some fun things to do in church (though I’m not responsible should anyone actually try these :-)
~ Slap your neighbor. See if they turn the other cheek. If not, raise your hand and tell the pastor.
~ By unobtrusively drawing your arms up into your sleeves, turn your shirt around backwards.
~ Start from the back of the church and try to crawl all the way to the front, under the pews, without being noticed (this couldn’t work in my church since there aren’t pews but I’d love to see it done).
~ Raise your hand and ask for permission to go to the rest room.
~ Sit close to the front, and during the prayer, turn around backwards, point, and count softly how many people do not have their heads bowed and eyes closed.

1 comment:

  1. this is totally perfect.
    that scripture is one of my absolute favorites, and i'm always [hopefully] reaching to obtain it. i love the niv translation that says something like "You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart."
    which can apply to a various topics of different things that our 'heart' can belong to. like money [matthew 6:21]. all your heart. all my heart. not just the portion that is simpler to give than the rest. give it all, despite what that might mean, and he will be found.

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