Ryan is the Senior Pastor of Harvest Bible Chapel in Hickory, NC. He is the host of the "In The Room" podcast, and the author of 8 Hours, Or Less: Writing Faithful Sermons Faster.  

7 Ways to Prepare for Gathered Worship

I can't tell you how many Christians have come to Redemption after leaving previous churches because they "just didn't get anything out of the Sunday service." Sometimes this is because they have come from a church that has abandoned the preaching of God's Word, but many times these are people that have come from great churches where the preaching is not the problem. I would argue that a big part of the problem is not our churches, not our preaching, and not the style of music used for worship. I would argue that a big part of the problem is that we show up for our times of gathered worship having given no attention to the preparation of our hearts and minds for what we're gathering to do.

We gather to hear GOD speak! We gather to lift our voices in adoration and praise to the one who created us, saved us, and sustains us! We gather to testify to the goodness of Jesus in our lives. We gather to experience the manifest presence of God in our midst!

This is a big deal!

It's the most important event of our week and thus warrants some work on our behalf. Here are 7 simple suggestions in no particular order I hope will help you better prepare for your time of gathered worship this Sunday.

1. Wake up early to pray and spend time in God's Word, rather than having to rush around so you're not late

2. Spend some time confessing any sin you know exists in your heart and life

3. Resolve any relational issues and conflicts so far as you are able

4. Read through the sermon text prior to arriving at church

5. Listen to worship music on your way and begin lifting the eyes of your heart to the ONE we gather  to worship

6. Arrive early and ask the Holy Spirit to begin preparing your heart to hear what He'd have you to hear

7. Spend time recounting specific evidences of God's grace in your life this week

The Spirit of God is present everywhere we go, but meets with us in a unique manner when we gather in His name and for His glory. Let's make the most of this special gift and come prepared to meet with the God who made us.

 

Waiting on God in Weariness

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