7.31.11 Worship Confessional

May the favor of the Lord our God rest on us;
establish the work of our hands for us—
yes, establish the work of our hands. (Psalm 90:17)

This morning we began a two week mini-series around the question, “does my work matter to God?” I introduced our community of faith to an important Hebrew word, avodah (which over the past few months has become my favorite Hebrew word). Avodah is a rich word, is used in a number of different ways in the Old Testament and is translated with at least three different English words:

  • Work (in Genesis 2:15)
  • Worship (in Exodus 8:1)
  • Serve (in Deuteronomy 10:12)

The Hebraic understanding of avodah reminds me that God sees our work, worship and serving as one. And if God views as one, what I typically consider as three separate and diverse activities, perhaps I need to align my perspective with that of God’s.

How might this understanding of avodah reframe how you approach your everyday, ordinary activities? What would it mean for you to offer your work to God as an act of worship? How does your work serve God and others, both in enhancing the common good for all people and also in building for the kingdom of God in our world today?

As well, this morning in worship we took some time to prayerfully send off one of our families who, due to an amazing job opportunity, will be moving away from our part of the world. Community is a doubled edged sword: the tighter the community is, the more difficult and painful it can be to release people. A wonderful family who has been with us for a couple of years will be moving to Chapel Hill, NC this week and within the context of the community’s worship, we took time to thank God for them and also to pray God’s richest blessings upon them as they begin a new season of life and work.

How do you acknowledge transitions in your community of faith? How do you both receive and release people?

This morning we introduced a new song by Matt Redman and Jonas Myrin entitled 10,000 Reasons (Bless the Lord). This is the title track from Matt’s latest project and I would highly commend both the song and the project to you. 10,000 Reasons has a hymn-like quality to it and it a wonderful fresh vehicle to help the people of God count their blessings and then respond in praise to the Source of all good gifts. You can learn more about the song and hear Matt perform it at Worship Together’s New Song Cafe.

Here is our complete worship flow:

  • Like a Lion: Daniel Bashta
  • Call to Worship from 1 Peter 2:4-10
  • Marvelous Light: Charlie Hall
  • Our God Is Mercy: Brenton Brown
  • 10,000 Reasons (Bless the Lord): Matt Redman
  • Sending Forth of a Family
  • Announcements and Offering
  • Message

You can learn what other communities of faith experienced in worship this weekend at The Worship Community.

Stay connected…

 

Comments

  1. 10,000 reasons is a great song and a great album. How did it go this morning?

    • Jeremiah – it went well. The song has a rich hymn-like quality to it and for a community that typically doesn’t do a ton of hymns, it moved us musically and lyrically to different space. Highly recommend the song.

      TT

  2. Thanks so much for this… when you introduced this at the “All Seven Days” Seminar in May I was immediately captivated. What would our lives look like if we ordered them around this understanding of Avodah- work worship and service as ONE!

    • Lisa- thanks for dropping by the site and leaving a comment. David Miller at the Avodah Foundation turned me onto this powerful truth. Next week I want to weave in some of Wilberforce’s great object stuff and seeing our work as the creation of cultural artifacts that can bless and help others flourish and thrive.

      TT

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