Every economy has a currency. And the currency of my childhood was Hot Wheels. We traded for them. We did every odd job to save up for them. One’s standing in the community was measured by wealth in Hot Wheels. My own holdings boasted a copper-colored 1970 Chevelle SS. Many cars came and went – fast cars, funny cars, and even some tricked out trucks – but the Chevelle was ‘my precious.’ Only covetousness for my best friend’s “power booster” ever tempted me to part with it. The power booster was a crown jewel in a Hot Wheels based economy.
Before the power booster, Hot Wheels were either boy-powered or gravity fed. But the power booster changed everything. Fueled by massive ‘D’ batteries, the power booster had two rubber wheels spinning in opposite directions astride the track. It would grab a slowing car and accelerate it with a balance and force not possible with boy-power. A skilled engineer knew the sweet spot, a few feet before the loopity-loop just beyond a curve. Care demanded just enough force to get the cars around the track without stopping or derailing.
Worship on the Lord’s Day is the power booster of the Christian life. More than mere rest from the week passed, the Lord’s Day, with its public and private worship, pours restfulness into the week ahead. We enter worship coasting on fumes but leave with balance, speed, and power. Worship resets our minds to what is real. Shows us who is sovereign over our daily chaos. Frames our lives by grace not the grind. And reminds us we are an “us,” not an “I.”
For this very reason we are cautioned not to “forsake assembling together” in Hebrews 10:25. Without worship we will derail or lose momentum. But assembling for worship has faced unexpected challenges over the past six months – challenges unimaginable a year ago. Pastors and elders have wrestled with distinctions between the essentials of worship and its circumstances. Civil magistrates have stepped on and over constitutional protections and religious liberties. And brothers and sisters in Christ have gone to civil war over differing views on the circumstances of assembly.
But, in our debates over the finer points of what it means to “assemble” and whether or not the use of masks is a veiled attempt at a new Vestiarian Controversy, have we missed the forest for the trees? Have we idolized our positions and lost sight of the truth that the Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath? Have we exchanged delight for the Sabbath in the pursuit of duty? The prophet Isaiah frames this concern well.
“If you turn back your foot from the Sabbath,Isaiah 58:13-14
from doing your pleasure on my holy day,
and call the Sabbath a delight
and the holy day of the Lord honorable;
if you honor it, not going your own ways,
or seeking your own pleasure, or talking idly;
then you shall take delight in the Lord,
and I will make you ride on the heights of the earth;
I will feed you with the heritage of Jacob your father,
for the mouth of the Lord has spoken.” Isaiah 58:13-14
Is your attitude toward the Lord’s Day one of delight? Or do you grumble your way through with a confessional precision that amounts to little more than a “trampling of [God’s] courts?” Debating what it means to “assemble together,” is important. Theology matters. And worship must be according to Scripture.
But are we as concerned about the effects of faithful worship as we are its circumstances? Do the people we meet during the week believe we have been in God’s presence? Does it show? Even through cloth masks, can they see “we all, with unveiled face, [have beheld] the glory of the Lord, [and] are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another.”
Worship is the power booster of the Christian life. It takes flagging Christians and gives the balance and momentum to negotiate tight turns and upside-down loops. It keeps us moving and on the tracks. Join us this week for worship as Pastor Chris Love from Church of Amazing Grace brings God’s Word from Revelation 2:23-29 as we consider “To the One Who Conquers: A Call to Personal Perseverance.”
We meet from 5:00 – 6:30 pm in The Commons at St. Andrews Anglican Church at 8300 Kanis Rd in Little Rock for worship. Get directions here or contact us for more info. You can also join us on Facebook Live @RiverCityARP