Worshipers on Boycott

It’s intriguing to see how encouragement and ministry happens over the Internet.  When I started sharing North Side’s journey of uniting our church concerning worship styles, services, and preferences, I mainly was attempting to share our thought process with the people of North Side.  Along the way, I began to receive correspondence from other pastors desiring to unite their churches but were afraid of the fallout.

We are still in awe of how God is doing more than we could possibly imagine during this time of transition in our church (Eph. 3:20).  Sunday was our 7th united worship service schedule, and attendance is up.  Involvement is up.  Excitement is up.  Of course, there are people who are not raving fans of the changes, but it is very minimal.  God is challenging all of us to strive for a united church.  It’s been a great thing.

I was asked last week by a minister in another church: “What do you do with disgruntled worshipers?  They are boycotting the music.  We have members waiting outside until the music is over to come in.  Some cover their ears.  Some refuse to sing certain types of songs.  Some won’t even stand up and sit there with their arms crossed.  It’s offensive to me.  What should I do?”

My first word of advice: “Stop being offended because those people’s actions are not against you.  They are against someone else.”

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The Purpose of Worship: The Glory of God

The following is an excerpt from a document North Side’s elders gave out to our church body on April 17th.  As we have prayed concerning the direction of the church and studied Scripture together, we are under conviction that we must be a church according to scriptural mandates.  Our church currently uses different styles of worship to relate to different groups of people.  Our time in the Word has changed our heads and our hearts.  The following is a brief excerpt, you can get the rest of the document here.

A passion for the glory of God is the hallmark of the redeemed. Because it is God’s passion, it must be our passion. To live passionately for the glory of God means that our greatest delight is found in delighting Him and our greatest fear is found in displeasing Him. When we fall short of living for His glory, (Romans 3:23) we fall into a life lived for the glory of self. Living life for our glory is sin. When we lose the great, high, noble calling of living life for His glory, the results are disastrous for the church. Worship is reduced to a consumer-driven personal experience, discipleship is reduced to a self-help program, and evangelism is reduced to a goal-driven sales pitch. Living as a church for the glory of God will redefine our purpose and redefine the methods we use in pursuing that purpose. Corporate worship, or worship as a church family, becomes a priority.

Psalm 133:1 reads, “Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brothers to dwell together in unity!”

Most of us have been conditioned to think of salvation in terms of the individual. The truth is, however, that God has saved a people unto Himself.

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