“Remember the Sabbath Day.”
Anticipation, Preparation, & Its Rewards
. . .
When Your Heart Eagerly Seeks It Finds
This past weekend 15-20,000 people converged on the Asbury campus in order to participate in the worship at the modest university chapel. One individual testified that he waited in line for 12 hours.
Perhaps you’ve seen clips of the men, women, and children standing in the long, snaking line that winds itself through the campus. The crowds stand prayerfully, eagerly waiting their turn to enter the hallowed halls, notwithstanding the rather cool temperatures that would attempt to push them away.
I am not one who has any significant opinions on the events transpiring at Asbury. I wouldn’t be critical or ready to back it as I don’t know much about what actually is happening there.
What I do know is this: There is anticipation, preparation, and fervent expectancy.
It seems that all the world is interested in what is going on inside the Asbury chapel. I for one am more interested in what is happening outside of it. I would encourage people to think more about the pilgrimage and the process. Think about the mindset of all those who have traveled great lengths to dawn the doors of ‘ground zero.’
Again, I do not want to downplay what may be a true movement of the Spirit, but I do wish to have us think about the frame of mind of those who are moving to the place where the Spirit is said to be moving.
The worshippers are coming to Asbury expectantly. They are eagerly—yes, even fervently—looking for something great to happen. They have high hopes for what God may be doing (and what he may do to them once they are there). Their radar is keenly tuned towards how the Spirit might speak.
Is it a wonder that they ‘hear from the Lord,’ sense his presence, worship with zeal, and walk away captivated. Is it a coincidence that God seems to have visited them?
Don’t think that this is merely a psychoanalysis. Neither am I suggesting that this is merely the nature of “mob think.”
Scripture actually commends this kind of thing. It is the kind of mentality we should have. Each and every time we walk into worship on the Lord’s Day we should come with intense anticipation. Are we not coming before a God who will descend, speak, reveal, and change?
The fourth commandment tells us to “remember” the Sabbath day. To “remember” in the Bible is not merely to think back on something that formally happened or recall the event which has gone by. To remember often has a anticipatory aspect to it. It is to think ahead.
Sunday shouldn’t surprise you. It comes around each week. And you should remember that it is coming. In doing so you should prepare for it, anticipate what you might find in it, and be ready to profit by whatever the Lord may do or say.
Jesus tells us that whoever seeks will find, whoever asks will receive, and whoever knocks will have the door opened unto him. I don’t doubt that is what many at Asbury are experiencing. It isn’t a manufactured thing. It is the natural fallout of God’s promise and command. If they are seeking, is it a surprise that they are finding?
Imagine going to bed on Saturday night thinking, “I can’t wait to hear what the Lord has for me tomorrow.” What would happen if you woke up Sunday morning with plenty of time to prepare; maybe intentionally singing a chorus or two while getting yourself ready?
Compare that to a hum drum approach to worship: Sunday is just another day; it’s just a routine. We have to do the thing again. I hope we are not late for lunch this time.
Whatever do you think a person with that kind of attitude will gain out of the worship service?
I can’t say much about Asbury. Time is the greatest critic of any revival. However, there is one thing we can say for certain, and it is this: “How blessed are those who seek Him with all their heart.” Psalm 119:2
The Peacemaker: New Study March 12
On Sunday March 12 the Hopewell evening crew will begin examining the precepts for peace in relationships. Join us as we learn how to bridge broken relationships, deal with breaches in friendships, and gain the peace and harmony the Lord intends.
Sundays 10:30 & 6
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A Reformed and family integrated Church in Ashland, Ohio.
Come & Worship
@ 10:30 am
1995 Baney Road
Ashland, OH 44805