The Beauty of Family Worship
We are back!! Central Baptist will be back together this coming Sunday, June 7th. It has been over two months since our church family has worshiped together in person. There is nothing like being in the same building as those who share a love of the Lord and are earnestly seeking His face in worship. I am so excited to hear the word spoken and sung, to see faces of our church family, to be together with one purpose, with one joy! I hope you are excited too!
Out of continuing caution, and to keep our children and volunteers as safe as possible, we are not offering any children’s childcare or small group classes at this time. That means they will join us at 9:00am and 10:30am for corporate family worship. It is possible your first thoughts now might no longer be of excitement and of joy, but of concern. Will the children sit still? Will they cry? Will they speak when they shouldn’t?
Please, let me encourage you to look at this from a different perspective. What if our thoughts were instead focused this way? I get to worship the Lord with my kids! I get to share my joy at being in the Lord’s presence with them! Don’t forget-we were all made to worship. Scripture says: Ascribe to the Lord the glory due His name; worship the Lord in the splendor of holiness Psalm 29:2. There is no age listed in scripture for worship, only a command-to worship the Lord. So together, young and old, can sing praises to the Lord, hear the word preached, see corporate prayer, and be witness to the generations worshiping one God together. Even in the Old Testament, God’s people gathered as families in worship. Declare a day of repentance, a holy fast day. Call a public meeting. Get everyone there. Consecrate the congregation. Make sure the elders come, but BRING IN THE CHILDREN, TOO, EVEN THE NURSING BABIES… Joel 2:15-16. Yes, you read that right! Joel is telling God’s people even the youngest infant has a place in corporate worship. Worship is for all of us. There is no one exempt from the need for the cross, and in turn, that leads us all to an outpouring of worship.
Here is another encouragement, just as we are called to worship, as parents we are also called to disciple and teach our children about the Lord. You are, and always will be, your child’s best teacher in their walk with Christ. If you show them worship is important to you, it will become important to them. You are laying a foundation in your child for a life dedicated to Christ when you worship with them. So, teach them the words to songs, how to find scripture and follow along with the words, show them the beauty in the ordinances of the church (baptism, offerings, Lord ’s Supper), how to focus during prayer time and listen as the pastor speaks. Will it be perfect? No. Will they obey every time you ask them to sit still or listen? Probably not. In some ways, they are not hard-wired at their age to do that yet but we can teach them and be patient with them. You’ll find they are fast and good learners. The importance of discipleship outweighs the worry of squirms and tears. Children are made to worship in their own way, and we never want to make them feel as if worshiping God is only for adults. Remember Jesus thoughts in the book of Mark, Let the children come to me, and do not stop them, because the Kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Mark 10:14
So will your child wiggle or your baby cry? Possibly, but that’s ok. Will they want to get up and walk around? It’s likely, but it will be fine. Take comfort in the fact that every parent who joins us will be in the same situation, and all older adults will have been in your shoes before. The book of Colossians puts it this way: Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs with thankfulness in your hearts to God, Col 3:16. There is beauty and value in bringing our children to worship. Will it perfect? No. Will it be worth it to worship with your children and teach them the joy that comes with worshiping the Lord? A resounding YES!