Vocabulary is a wonderful thing and yet at the same time can also be a very confusing thing. From the very beginning of our lives, we are taught to sound out and use the different words that will make up our ever-growing vocabulary. It’s not only important to know how to spell and say the words but also to know how to understand the meaning and context of them as well. It is the combination of all of these that makes our vocabulary useful and understandable.
It can be very interesting how different groups and organizations can gravitate towards using a set group of words that become key words to how things operate in that space. This local lingo is essential to how the group works and communicates and unless one knows these buzz words, they might become confused and lost.
Let’s take a school for example. Some of the key words one would hear in a school would be: standards, grades, homework, tests, and principal. Or how about at a bank: loan, interest, teller, credit score, finances, and ATM. A hospital would be another interesting one: surgeon, scalpel, inpatient, ward, and ICU. Or what about a museum: gallery, exhibit, conservatory, curator, and pavilion.
Now one could see how, over time, an understanding of these words would be accomplished, but stop and think about how you or I came to an understanding of these words in the first place. There was a context and an experience with these words, we might have had others show or explain to us the meaning of these words, or we may have read or studied them ourselves. Now consider someone who is new to these settings and hearing these words for the first time, or has a completely different understanding and context to these words altogether? That would be quite challenging.
The church is no different. We too have key words and a local dialect of our own that needs experience and context for understanding. People who are new to the church might get overwhelmed with the over-used “Christianese” terms that they may hear. Even people who have been in the church and have been surrounded by these words for much of their lives can even benefit from a review of these foundational vocabulary hallmarks.
This week, we come to such a word: Worship. Worship is everywhere in the church. We have worship services, worship centers, worship songs and music, worship nights, and worship directors. It can be good to look back at just exactly what worship is. Who is it for? What is it about? What does it look like? As we look into these questions, among others, God desires and invites us to worship Him. He calls for us to worship Him not only because He is worthy and deserves it, but because it is within worship that He gives us something as well. God seeks to bless us in our worship of Him. He wants to remind us of our place as His child and He wants to share with us His heart. May we seek to worship our King in the spirit and truth that He gives and shares with us. “Come, let us bow down in worship, let us kneel before the Lord our Maker; for he is our God and we are the people of his pasture, the flock under his care” (Psalm 95:6-7 NIV.)
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Pastor Ben Bigaouette