Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Why I Like Visiting Other Churches

When vacationing in Massanutten, Virginia, a couple weeks ago, we attended the McGaheysville United Methodist Church. The pastor was on sabbatical, and one of the parishioners, first name Sarah, spoke. Her first message ever, the Lord used her as she let her testimony illuminate the selected Scripture from Eph 3-4.

I love worshiping at other churches when I’m on vacation. When picking a church to visit, I usually look for one or more of the following:
--smaller church as opposed to bigger church
--different liturgical tradition OR Missionary church where a friend pastors
--church we haven’t been to before.

There’s something special to me about worshiping with people whom I don’t know and whom I’ll probably never see again on this earth, but who are nonetheless my brothers and sisters in Christ and with whom I’ll live in the new heavens and new earth throughout eternity.

The liturgy of this United Methodist Church was more formal than Northside’s. I liked praying the Lord’s Prayer together, and in the KJV. I enjoyed singing more than one hymn during the service. Singing the Doxology as the ushers presented at the altar the tithes and offerings reminded me of doing the same every Sunday at Eastwood Chapel when I was growing up.

I also appreciated the (subtle) Trinitarian format of the service as laid out in the bulletin:
--“We are drawn together by the Holy Spirit.”
--“We proclaim and respond to God’s Word.”
--“We now go forth with the light of Christ.”

Sunday morning public worship is a breath of fresh air, whether I’m at Northside, or in another part of the Fort, or in Virginia, or even in China. It rejuvenates my spirit, raises my eyes to the Lord and his grace, inspires my faith, reminds me of my hope, and increases my joy.

No comments: