Over the years, I’ve noticed that we have become cardboard worshippers. We are stiff, rigid and unwilling to change from what we have cut ourselves into. The bad part about it is that we don’t even realize that it has happened.
We walk through the doors of our place of worship, we glad-hand our way to our seat (God forbid anyone take our “spot”) and when the service starts, we become stiff and stale like one of those John Wayne cutouts. There is no worship. No engagement between us and the God who so desperately wants to have that relationship with us. We are too preoccupied with our phones, our clothes, who to attack next on Facebook and what kind of crap that person on the other side of the sanctuary is talking about us.
Every week, we get two chances (or more) to gather with our fellow believers at the feet of God, a luxury that some people can only dream of, and worship unabashedly. But it is often taken for granted because it doesn’t fit into our cardboard existence that we have crafted for ourselves. Many are content just showing up, warming a seat and improving our stock in the eyes of our fellow man.
This behavior isn’t new. In fact, Paul wrote to Timothy about it in 2 Timothy 3:1-9.
“Don’t be naive. There are difficult times ahead. As the end approaches, people are going to be self-absorbed, money-hungry, self-promoting, stuck-up, profane, contemptuous of parents, crude, coarse, dog-eat-dog, unbending, slanderers, impulsively wild, savage, cynical, treacherous, ruthless, bloated windbags, addicted to lust, and allergic to God. They’ll make a show of religion, but behind the scenes they’re animals. Stay clear of these people.”
2 Timothy 3:1-5 MSG
So what do you do? Paul had the solution just a few lines later.
“But don’t let it faze you. Stick with what you learned and believed, sure of the integrity of your teachers—why, you took in the sacred Scriptures with your mother’s milk! There’s nothing like the written Word of God for showing you the way to salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. Every part of Scripture is God-breathed and useful one way or another—showing us truth, exposing our rebellion, correcting our mistakes, training us to live God’s way. Through the Word we are put together and shaped up for the tasks God has for us.”
2 Timothy 3:14-17 MSG
We have to be at constant war with our flesh so that we don’t fall into the trap that the devil has set for us. We have to engage with our God on a daily basis in our prayer life and quiet times. When it comes to worship, we should whole-heartedly give ourselves over to Him. Press in and glean from the Word that is set forth to us by God through your pastor.
“So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most.”
Hebrews 4:16 NLT
With the world going just about as crazy as ever, now is the time for the Church to be as active as ever. To be lovers of people rather than lovers of self. To pray and seek His face rather than seeking our own. To serve rather than wait for service.
Take you cardboard life and trade it for a clay one, ready to be molded by the Potter’s hands.
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