When Sojourners Comes Together: We Boast in Christ
So, let me give a picture of the kind of worship service we’re praying happens week in and week out at Sojourners and then give you an invitation to help us create it week in and week out from 1 Corinthians 12-14:
- We want worship services where people come expecting to meet the living God through Jesus and by the Spirit.
People living on the edge of eternity should come with their hope set on Jesus and their hearts set on getting help to persevere through life’s joys and sorrows in a way that honors him. With life as a vapor there is not time for games or gimmicks in worship when the living God holds out the offer to come and help us by his Spirit because of the blood of Jesus.
- We want worship services where people come expecting God to use them to help others and expecting God to help them through others.
In other words, church is not a spectator sport. You can help others with your worship, with your prayers, with your fellowship, and with your gifts. Church is the blood-bought family of God coming together to be fed and stir one another up to go out for the next 6 days and live in such a way that the world sees our works and gives glory to our Father in heaven.
- We want worship services that are carefully and prayerfully planned to help people understand God, the gospel, and their purpose in light of those things.
We want to prayerfully work hard to get the Bible right and speak the author's original intent week in and week out. We want to give helpful application that speaks to everyday life in relevant ways no matter where we are in the Bible. We want welcomes, songs, and prayers that clearly speaks the truth of God’s word. We want gospel-clarity that builds up the blood-bought family and can bring conviction and worship to those who don’t yet know Jesus so they join our family.
We want a plan and an order that serves your joy in Jesus because you are built up, focused, and helped to remember the gospel in ways that don’t distract you.
- We want worship services where we are willing to listen to Spirit-given spontaneity as we meet.
We want to be engaged in worship and eager to follow the lead of the Spirit in all we do. We want everything that happens, from the first note played to the last word spoken in prayer to be empowered by the Spirit of God to help us make much of Jesus together. We want to plan well, but be willing to forego those plans if the Spirit is doing something else.
- We want worship services with people who have been seeking God in the word and prayer all week.
The way you can best be helped and help others when you come on Sunday is if you have been seeking to hear God through the Scriptures and speak to God in prayer throughout the week. People that know Jesus in a first-hand, seek him every day kind of way are able to help others know him in that same way. They are able to speak sensitively to others pain, give wisdom from God’s word, and pray effectively for others to God because it’s not the first time they’re interacting with him that week, but they’re really talking to their Father who they know, love, and speak to every day.
- All to Know, Treasure, and Boast in Jesus Alone
Therefore, in summary, all of us in Christ have been baptized in the Spirit into the body of Christ. That Spirit gives and empowers us with diverse gifts for his one body to build up his church. We are called to gather together in the way of love, dealing with bitterness and frustration in our hearts toward other believers before we come and coming to help each other and be helped. And all of this, the gifts, the way of love, and the gathering together is so that we are a people more dependent on God and boasting only in Christ and not ourselves.