I rejoiced with those who said to me, “Let us go to the house of the LORD.” Psalm 122:1
How do you feel about going to church every Sunday? The psalmist indicates an enthusiasm for worship. Also the early Christians gladly met daily in homes and at least weekly to worship. An every-Sunday glad!
Unfortunately, we sometimes lack the joy of worship. Why? First of all, we may subconsciously say, “I was afraid when they said to me, ‘Let us go to the house of the Lord.’” We may be afraid to come because we haven’t kept up with our church pledge. We feel unworthy. We come because we feel duty-bound. We want to avoid hell or excommunication from the church. No gladness in worship when we are afraid.
Second, we may be saying, “I was stubborn when they said to me, ‘Let us go to the house of the Lord.’ No one can tell me what to do. I live in a free country. I’m not coming to church until I feel like it!” Or at church we may insist that we will not be able to worship unless they keep the traditional liturgy. No gladness in worship when we are stubborn.
Third, we could be saying, “I was bored when they said to me, ‘Let us go to the house of the Lord.’ Other things excite me more, like golf, camping, or even sleeping. I’m bored at church – the same old service and same kind of sermons.” No gladness in worship when we are bored.
Only God can give us an every-Sunday glad. He sent His Son for us with a life of glad worship. The temple of His body, though destroyed, was raised up on the third day. He stands at the center of His people with His blood-bought forgiveness. God transforms our hearts through faith in His promises. His Word and sacraments cleanse us of fear, stubbornness, and boredom. We come together into His presence with high expectations. Silent before Him, we hear again of His love. He fills our hearts with gladness that endures.
PRAYER: Lord, fill my heart with gladness as I worship You. Amen.
(Devotions from “My Daily Devotion” by Dr. Stephen J. Carter, copyright 1988 CPH. All Rights Reserved. No part of this publication may be printed, reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without prior written permission of Concordia Publishing House. For ordering information, please contact CPH at 800-325-3040 or visit www.cph.org.)
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