With a Grateful Heart

As the end of the year draws near, it is with a grateful heart that I reflect on 2019. I am especially thankful for the support of family, friends and colleagues as we continue to seek God’s will for the Music and Worship at Providence. Our movement to one service of community worship has been an important and exciting change, one that I hope will  continue to bear fruit! I tend to agree with the late Robert Webber, noted author and worship theologian, who wrote:

I am keenly aware that it is one thing to talk about worship renewal and another thing to actually experience it in the local church. We are dealing with sacred and holy  round when we attempt to bring about change in worship. Even if members of the congregation will admit the need to change the worship of the church, that change will not happen easily or quickly.

(Robert Webber, Worship Is a Verb: Celebrating God’s Mighty Deeds of Salvation)

In the book, Webber places great importance on participation in worship, encouraging us to “break through the passive mold of being observers or recipients … [and] become active participants and doers.”

The book of James offers similar wisdom: But be doers of the word, and not merely hearers who deceive themselves. For if any are hearers of the word and not doers, they are like those who look at themselves in a mirror; for they look at themselves and, on going away, immediately forget what they were like. But those who look into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and persevere, being not hearers who forget but doers who act—they will be blessed in their doing.  James 1:22-25 (NRSV)

Worship leads us into the life of God, revealing the truth of who God is, who we are, and what we are here to do. As I look back with gratitude and forward with hope, it is my prayer that our church will be blessed in our doing, and that worship will lead us to a more profound Alleluia!

Soli Deo Gloria,