What are we coming to church to feast upon?
Is it the beauty of the liturgy, the style of the music, the personality of the preacher, the sound of the instruments, or the particulars of the presentation?
Or it is Jesus Christ himself, present by His Spirit, alive in the Word, remembered at the Table, and exalted in our praises?
Oh what a tragedy when Christians gather for corporate worship and fix their eyes on lesser things, worship at little altars, obsess over preferences, and go home after 90 minutes having missed the forest for the trees. Jesus is beckoning us to feast upon him, to delight in him alone, and to lift our voices – whether they be loud and strong, or weak and feeble – to praise and magnify him.
I lament over how often I miss him. An entire Sunday can go by, complete with three different services, rehearsals, song lists, and sermons, and my attention has been everywhere in the world except for the preeminent One, the Risen Savior himself. What’s not working, what went well, who’s being difficult, what needs to be fixed, who’s complaining, where am I supposed to be, what’s happening next, and why did I mess that particular thing up? My mind is a swirling storm of competing demands that fool me away from feasting on Jesus, in all his glory and goodness.
I wonder how often you miss him too, and how often it has to do with choosing to feed your little appetites with little things that only leave you hungrier than you were before. Corporate worship becomes your time to seek after the things you deem important in order to satisfy the cravings you’ve allowed to creep up in your soul. Jesus is standing there, front and center, and you’re looking around him.
Let’s try looking at Jesus this Sunday. Maybe the sermon could have been improved. Maybe there are technical distractions. Maybe the songs could have been better chosen. Maybe that’s all true, and you have good points, and those points can be addressed later.
But never forget that Jesus is the feast. And he alone satisfies. Delight in him, lift your voice to him, turn your ear to him, and let him smash your little idols on their little altars, so you might worship him alone.
This is my prayer first and foremost for me, and also for you.