Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

Getting Excited In Worship

Psalm 134:2

Lift up your hands in the sanctuary and praise the Lord.

IMG_0301As of this morning – the MLB website has my Baltimore Orioles in 1st place in their division. Yesterday the two teams ahead of them lost while my Birds won both ends of a double-header from the Indians – shutting them out in both games (sorry Justin M.). Although only percentage points in front (they have one less loss and one less win) – they are indeed in 1st place.

Because of a few church duties – I missed watching the first game – but caught parts of it on my cell and on the radio driving around Laurel – Columbia – Dayton – and home to Harwood. I watched the second game – every pitch! I witnessed maybe the best catch of the year by Travis Snider (es.pn/1HpflRf ) and homers by Chris Davis – Travis Snider – and Chris Parmelee. Manny Machado had tied Davis for the team lead in homers in game one of the double-header – so of course Davis had to one up him in the nightcap.  Both starting pitchers played well – Ubaldo Jimenez was dominate again and Chris Tillman rebounded from a rocky start to pitch well as well.

Even though one of my granddaughters was asleep in the same room – I let out a yell or two during the game. Fans were cheering wildly during the 4-0 and 8-0 wins yesterday – as they have been during the most recent surge by the O’s that has seen them win 18 out of 23 games – to move into 1st place. Fans – short for fanatics – never seem reluctant to show their excitement for the O’s or Ravens or their favorite team.

FUMCLNightAll of this followed Sunday morning worship services. We had awesome worship at First UM Church in Laurel – MD. Both services at 8:15 & 11 am were well attended for the summer months and the Spirit was present for sure. But – like many places of worship I imagine – people seemed reluctant to express their excitement. Some clapped to the music – a few amens were heard here and there – but little excitement was expressed. Whereas at ball games people will shout and jump up and down – in worship – whether traditional or contemporary (and we have both) – people seem much more subdued.

Some would say – I like my worship quiet and dignified. I don’t mean to be disrespectful – but I guess there are a number of Michal’s in churches today. Remember David’s wife – who thought David was undignified when he danced before the Lord? David didn’t care what others thought – he rejoiced before the Lord because of what God had done for him.

Maybe we can cut loose at a ball game but have a hard time cutting loose in worship. Maybe our team winning excites us more than the gift of salvation – the daily reminders of God’s grace and mercy – and walking daily with Jesus! Just thinking out loud – or is that undignified as well?

Hear me when I say – if you feel like sitting quiet in worship – by all means – please do so. But if someone else feels like shouting or dancing in the aisles – please don’t hinder them or look down on them like Michal did when her husband danced before the Lord! Those folks just might feel some of the same joy and excitement you feel when your team wins a game – maybe even more!

Today’s passage says – lift up your hands in the sanctuary and praise the Lord. Maybe we should care less for what others think and follow the directions of our God. Maybe we should express ourselves in worship and get excited for what God has done – is doing – and will do in our lives!

Just something to think about today as you go on your way.


June 29, 2015 - Posted by | Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Denomination, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Holy Spirit, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Theology, Worship | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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