Tag Archives: Compartmentalize

24/7/365 Worship

Church-of-the-Holy-Spirit-Jihlava2011
This building is called Church-of-the-Holy-Spirit, but the real church of the Holy Spirit is what every believer sees when he/she looks in  a mirror. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Those who were musicians, heads of Levite families, stayed in the rooms of the temple and were exempt from other duties because they were responsible for the work day and night.
1 Chronicles 9:33 (NIV)

For many of us, worship is something that happens one hour on Sunday each week. If you or your local gathering of believers is really whacky, you might add another hour or two by way of a Sunday night, Saturday night, or mid-week worship.

It struck me this morning reading about the host of singers and musicians who literally lived in the temple because they were needed day and night for the continuous worship that took place. The idea of “continuous worship” is foreign to most of us because our brains, experience, and tradition has been to compartmentalize worship into a one or two hour time slot in our week. The threat of this, of course, is that we think of God and/or our faith as something we put into a compartment of time. We take it out once or twice a week, then put it back and forget about it until the calendar and clock tell us it’s time to pull it back out again.

I am reminded this morning of the radical concept that Jesus introduced and which Jesus followers celebrated around the globe just over a week ago on the Sunday we call Pentecost. God’s Holy Spirit was poured out into the hearts of believers. The temple stopped being bricks and mortar and became flesh and blood in the form of any and all who believe. Church was never supposed to be a building we go to once or twice a week. Church was to be the living, breathing, touching, loving, feeling, serving people who believe and follow Jesus. Worship can happen anywhere, anytime, day or night because God isn’t at the church building, God is in me. My body is the temple and I take it with me wherever I go.

Today, I’m reminded once again that my body is a temple of God open for worship 24/7/365.

 

Chapter-a-Day Romans 13

But make sure that you don’t get so absorbed and exhausted in taking care of all your day-by-day obligations that you lose track of the time and doze off, oblivious to God. Romans 13:11 (MSG)

I own several briefcases. I’ve amassed them over time. Several of them were given to me for my work. They are pretty ragged from years of life on the road, but I still keep them. I have a few others that I acquired for one reason or another. I like briefcases. They have all sorts of cool pockets and compartments for keeping (and losing) things.

I now have enough old briefcases that I’ve designated them to serve me in different functions of life. That way, I’m not packing and unpacking one briefcase for different needs each day. I just grab the appropriate briefcase for what I’m doing and go. I have my work briefcase, my theatre briefcase, my music briefcase, my church briefcase, and my on-the-go briefcase for random occasions that don’t fit in the major three categories. You should be impressed, this level of organization for someone as right brained as I am is just short of a miracle.

I noticed, however, that I compartmentalize my life with my briefcases. I finish my work, then put my work briefcase away. I get out my theatre briefcase for rehearsal. When rehearsal is over I put my theatre things away. Like my briefcases, my life seems to have compartments, which is the problem.

I’m noticing my penchant for treating God like a task to be compartmentalized. Read my chapter, write my post, say my prayers, then put the God briefcase away so I can take my work briefcase out.

God is not a task to be completed, and Jesus certainly isn’t an object to be taken out and put away like every other functionary item I use for my own purpose.  He is a person to be present with me in every moment. He is a friend to accompany me through each and every compartment of my day. He is Lord of my life, ever present to direct, protect, correct, and provide.

Lord have mercy on me. Forgive me for trying to shove you in a briefcase.