This week as we continued our series, The Five Ways of Being, our newest staff member, Dave Bindewald, shared a tremendous message on encouragement. Working from Psalm 3, Dave reminded us that the source of true encouragement is God, the One who lifts our head. And the privilege we have in Christ, is to stand in His place and encourage one another with the encouragement we have received.
Two notes from our worship gathering: borrowing an idea from J. R. Daniel Kirk, professor of New Testament at Fuller Seminary, we took a different tone in our declaration of the Apostles Creed. In a post titled “From Faith to Follow,” Kirk writes:
“I keep coming back to Confessions of Faith. As I dance around this (repeatedly) there’s one major thing I’m trying go get to: we as Christians have regularly created the impression that being a Christian is defined by thinking/believing the right things. Thinking the right things isn’t bad. At some level it’s necessary. But I don’t want to say with, say, Philip Schaff, that belief in the content of the creeds is “necessary and sufficient” for salvation. So what if our recitations of our shared narrative began with a phrase other than, “I believe,” a phrase that was was self-involving in a different way?”
Today we declared these words:
We worship God, the Father Almighty, the Creator of heaven and earth.
We follow Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord: Who was conceived of the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried. He descended into hell. The third day He arose again from the dead. He ascended into heaven and sits at the right hand of God the Father Almighty, from there He shall come to judge the living and the dead.
We receive the Holy Spirit.
We believe in the holy catholic church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and life everlasting. Amen.
What do you think about this (re)expression of the historic affirmation of the faith?
The second piece of traditional liturgy that we included in our gather was praying together the Collect for Purity. This 11th century prayer was translated into English by Thomas Crammer and has been a part of the Anglican Book of Common Prayer for centuries. The song, “Here for You,” written by Matt Maher and Matt Redman, has its origins in this ancient prayer and we flowed directly from that song into the prayer:
Almighty God, to You all hearts are open, all desires known, and from You no secrets are hid: Cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of Your Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love You, and worthily magnify Your holy Name; through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Here is our complete worship flow:
- Awake My Soul (Chris Tomlin)
- Here For Your (Matt Redman)
- Collect for Purity
- Whom Shall I Fear (Chris Tomlin)
- Apostles Creed
- Jesus, Son of God (Chris Tomlin)
- Announcements and Offering
- Message (Be Encouraging)
- Reprise: Whom Shall I Fear
- Benediction from Romans 15:13
You can learn what other communities of faith experienced this weekend in worship at The Worship Community.