Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Preparing to actively “minister” in Sunday worship
Geoffrey R. Kirkland
Christ Fellowship Bible Church

This is a letter written to the members of CFBC to encourage them and seek to help them think broadly and widely about "ministering" to one another when the saints gather together on Sundays. Perhaps there may be elements of this that others may be able to incorporate in their particular contexts and local churches.

1. Get rest — Get plenty of sleep on Saturday night (even though we don’t worship early on Sunday mornings) and remember that the whole day belongs to the Lord and we would do well to devote this day to the worship of God individually, with our families, and corporately with CFBC. This corporate worship is one of the greatest gift Christ gives to us. Let’s be rested and alert to both give to Him and to one another and to receive from Him every time we gather together.

2. Read the text — Take the weekly preparation email (sent out on Fridays) and read the text that will be preached. In fact, read it a few times through over the following few days till Sunday and pray through it. Read the corporate Scripture reading text and other Scriptures that may be helpful in preparing to hear from God.

3. Pray with breadth — Our Lord calls us to open our mouths wide that He may fill it. We are called to pray big prayers, enlarged prayers, God-sized prayers. What if God were to hear and answer every single one of our prayers that we bring before Him? What would change? How many people would be converted? Would revival break in? Would our young people be drawn to Christ, on fire for Him, and longing to be trained for ministry? Pray for as many aspects of the corporate worship service and the Sunday activities that you can think of (nursery, catechism, youth Bible study, songs, preaching, power of the Spirit, etc.)

4. Protect the day — I firmly believe that all Christians must diligently fight to attend corporate worship every Sunday. We find ourselves bombarded on all sides with distractions, entertainments, sports, travels, and parties that can take us away from the corporate gathering with our church family. Of course travels, sickness, and various things may come up. But this should be the exception and never the norm. May the Lord give us such a hunger for the steady, rich, full and satisfying diet of His Word and of sweet fellowship that missing a Sunday would be like missing a week of eating physical food. Let us prepare well, attend faithfully, and arrive early so we can be in our seat ahead of time and ready for the worship service to begin.

5. Initiate interactions — Let us carefully consider how we can stimulate one another (in our local assembly) to love and good deeds. How can you initiate interactions with one another? With those whom you don’t usually converse with? With the young people, teenagers, singles? Even with those who are very different than you? Let’s pray for one another and seek to initiate interactions with others. Consider asking such Christ-centered questions such as: “what did you read and glean from God’s Word this week?” Or “how did God show Himself to you through the preached Word today?” Or “Is there some specific way that I can intercede for you in prayer this upcoming week?” May the Lord encourage and edify His people as we proactively initiate interactions with one another — for the glory of Christ and for the good of our souls.
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