I’m a big believer in the idea that we do, with excellence, the things we care to do. And the things we don’t care to do, we just do. To get done. To get them over with.
Like fitted sheets. I don’t fold them. I take them out of the laundry basket, hold them up, frown, fold an awkward rectangle, and give up. I then commence to roll them into a ball and stuff them in the closet. I try to tell myself that my lack of sheet-folding savvy is due to the insane level of intelligence it takes to fold a fitted sheet, and it’s just too hard.
But, in reality, I just don’t care. It really doesn’t bother me that when I look in my mother’s linen closet, her fitted sheets are folded crisply and neatly, and mine look like used paper towels. With much therapy, I am able to safely say, I claim my fitted-sheet dysfunction.
Is this ok?
Is this ok with you?
What if I replaced my ever-too-lengthy discussion of bed sheets with a confession about my worship? Would it be ok with you if I told you I don’t engage on Sunday mornings, that I don’t look at my life as an offering to God, that I don’t consider my sin…or anything before I take Communion, that I roll my eyes when the children march up to hear the Word of God, and that I check my Facebook feed while the Scripture is being read aloud to me? What if I told you I put money in the offering plate only because I’m superstitious and I fear social and divine recompense if I don’t.
Would that be ok?
Would that be ok with you?
I hope not.
There may be things in our lives that can be done without intention, and without excellence, but not worship. If we’re going to enter into worship without the goal of blessing God, we ought not enter.
I’ve heard it said that some people can’t worship if the music is wrong, or the preacher is boring, or the communion bread is stale, or they had to dress up, or the person next to them didn’t dress up.
In other words, it’s just too hard.
Or is it that we just don’t care?
Momentarily subtracting seekers and unwilling participants in corporate worship, do we, veteran worshipers, give up on the intense, divine give-and-take of worship because the edges and corners don’t match up perfectly? (Forgive the corny reference back to my fitted sheets)
It has been my prayer recently that we, as a people of God, could worship with excellence. I don’t mean in quality of song or proclamation, but with excellence of devotion, direction, passion, and purpose. I believe that if we care to do it, we will. If we don’t, well, worship will end up looking to God like used paper towels.