A Venture in Faith
Barrie Fox of Kirkby in Ashfield, Nottinghamshire, England
Thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, to all the exiles whom I have sent into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon: Build houses and live in them; plant gardens and eat what they produce. … But seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to the LORD on its behalf, for in its welfare you will find your welfare…. For surely I know the plans I have for you, says the LORD, plans for your welfare and not for harm, to give you a future with hope. -Jeremiah 29:4-5, 7, 11
Attending and becoming involved in worship services on a regular basis is what we might expect for the majority of people who call themselves Christians. Unfortunately, as the years have gone by, it seems to have become less and less of a reality. This is particularly the case in my home country, England. I see worship as being a venture in faith and, at its best, can be an enjoyable and sometimes challenging encounter with that which we believe to be divine. Christian worship is centered in the acceptance that God can be and indeed is with us in and through Jesus Christ and the power of the Holy Spirit. I have heard worship defined as the human response to God’s revelation of himself.
Worship, as I understand it, is an activity or experience which can bring to the worshiper an increasing awareness of some of life’s wonderful truths, possibilities, and opportunities. It can also bring to the worshiper a greater realization of God’s involvement in the lives of people through the ages and today in our present age. It certainly can and often does remind us of who we are, of the blessings that are ours, and of the possibilities that are before us. I accept that there are times when our worship experiences ought to perhaps be more dynamic. I do not mean necessarily louder or faster, but more active and alive, more encouraging and more challenging. True and sincere worship does have the ability to confirm to us our personal worth in the eyes of God.
I recently heard a statement on faith, attributed to Corrie Ten Boom, that really appealed to me: “Faith sees the invisible, believes the unbelievable, and receives the impossible.” Thanks be to God that we can have faith.
God is here today. (“Dios est\xc3\xa1 aqu\xc3\xad” CCS 150)
Breathing in the Spirit
Find a comfortable but alert position and begin to breathe deeply. With each breath, feel yourself relax, releasing anything that feels constricting. Imagine that each breath is the wind of the Spirit moving through your being, stirring up what is most alive in you. Relax into the flow of the Spirit and notice what awareness or invitation emerges.
Today’s Prayer for Peace
Engage in a daily practice of praying for peace in our world. Click here to read today’s prayer and be part of this practice of peace.