Churches love demographics. Some sociographic statistics are helpful to enable a church to understand and engage its community, while other research may detail the habits, healthy and unhealthy, of the congregation itself. Years ago, a church our family attended commissioned a detailed demographic study of its congregation and community. A Lord’s Day was appointed to unveil the results of the study and to cast a vision for the next 5 years of congregational life. I confess that the only statistics that stood out to me that day were 1) the average distance families lived from the church, contrasted with 2) the time it took them to get to church. As a recovering mathematician, I immediately collated these stats and computed that the average rate of travel for families attending worship was 68.7 mph — a telling statistic that most worshippers arrived in their pews breathless and emotionally rumpled.
How prepared are you to enter God’s presence in worship? Do you arrive to worship breathless and emotionally rumpled? Or have you taken time to recognize that private, public and family worship demands prayerful and careful preparation? Perhaps our frequent lack of preparation flows out of a contemporary ambiguity about the purpose and nature of worship or simply from too little time spent worshipping.
We read little about the patriarch, Jacob’s private, family or public worship. Time and time again, Jacob devises worldly schemes to respond to the crises du jour, but seeking the Lord in prayer and worship is rarely part of his modus operandi. In Genesis 35, however, the Lord confronts Jacob and directs him to return to Bethel where He had appeared to Jacob as he fled his brother’s murderous rage. But before Jacob can meet the Lord, he makes careful preparations, lest he find God’s wrath rather than His blessing at the “house of God.”
Join us this Lord’s Day, February 25, as we examine Genesis 35 and consider our preparation to meet the Lord in worship. We meet from 5:00 – 6:30 pm in The Commons at St. Andrews Anglican Church at 8300 Kanis Rd in Little Rock. Click here for directions.
Come with a friend you and join us for fellowship and conversation. We look forward to seeing you there.