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Daily Devotions from Lutheran Hour Ministries

"When the Heart Goes to Church"

October 28, 2006

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"God is spirit, and His worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth." John 4:24

It was Sunday morning, we may imagine, and the church was filled with people. Yet, throughout the service, the house of worship was strangely silent. The organist played, but there was no music. The minister preached, but no words came from his lips. The choir and the congregation sang and prayed, but not a sound was heard -- none except the lone voice of a little child.

A dream? Perhaps, and yet, this is certainly true: All our worship is meaningless motion and voiceless sound, going nowhere, unable to penetrate to the ear of God -- all except that which comes from the heart of the child of God.

That is what Jesus means when He says that "God is spirit" and that we must worship God "in spirit and in truth." It is our heart that must go to church, not merely our well-dressed body. And our heart will go to church if, so to speak, our heart is a church, a temple of the Holy Spirit. As Jesus lives in our heart by faith, His Holy Spirit will work through Word and sacraments to spiritualize our worship and make our singing and praying a childlike "Abba, Father." And that is worship.

PRAYER: O Holy Spirit, grant me grace to worship my Father, in the name of my Savior, Jesus Christ, with all my heart; in Jesus' name. Amen.

(Devotions from "The Abundant Life" copyright 1998, 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. Permission is granted for one-time e-mailing of this link to a friend. For information on other devotional material, please contact CPH at 800-325-3040 or visit CPH at www.cph.org.)

Today's Bible Readings: Jeremiah 49, 13-22    Hebrews 3

Change Their World. Change Yours. This changes everything.

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