When you come to a Sunday worship gathering, what should you see? What makes our church worth the time and investment? What are we doing here that makes us unique? There are seven things that we value together. These seven traits are rare enough that when a church achieves them, you know you have found something special.
God-Centered Worship. “So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God” (1 Corinthians 10:31 ESV). Every church will say that they do everything for the glory of God. But, what we say is that even our doing is dependent on God. God gets the glory in all that we do because he gives us the strength for everything that we do in life. For this reason, we encourage you to come and get grace on Sunday morning. That’s not selfish. That’s survival! When you receive the grace of seeing the glory of God, then you are empowered to live a life of service to the glory of God.
Christ-Exalting Worship. “[Christ] was foreknown before the foundation of the world but was made manifest in the last times for the sake of you who through him are believers in God, who raised him from the dead and gave him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God” (1 Peter 1:20–21 ESV). The only way to believe in God is to believe in Christ. Christ isn’t just the way of salvation, he is the revelation of God. Our God is Jesus Christ. We glorify God the Father, through the Son of God, Jesus Christ, by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Bible-Saturated Worship. “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 17that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:16–17 ESV). We don’t use the Bible as a launch pad on Sunday mornings. We stay bound to the Bible. We explain the Word of God phrase by phrase through books of the Bible. Our goal is to explain the Bible and saturate our worship with the Word of God.
Gospel-Explicit Worship. “For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek” (Romans 1:16 ESV). The gospel isn’t just the way for non-Christians to become Christians and to be saved. It’s the way that Christians become mature Christians. So, we seek to explain the gospel clearly every time we meet. The gospel saves and unifies us as a people.
Spirit-Led Worship. “When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come” (John 16:13 ESV). We make it our aim to live lives that are led by the Spirit, filled with Spirit, empowered by the Spirit, and taught by the Spirit. We want to be open to the Spirit’s ministry in our church. We seek to know the gifts he has given to us and use those gifts to glorify God the Father.
Transparent Relationships in Worship. “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another” (John 13:34 ESV). The gospel teaches that every person is broken and needy. So, on Sunday mornings, we don’t try to hide our brokenness. We are sinners in need of a Savior. So, we interact with each other knowing that we are all broken, needy, and loved by Christ. Therefore, we love one another.
Supernaturally Casual Worship. “I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship” (Romans 12:1 ESV). There is something both casual and supernatural about our Sunday worship gathering. It is casual because you should spend every day of the week going hard after the living God. You should do this in your work clothes, your baby spit-up-on clothes, your business attire, your tractors, your boats, your homes, your cars, in baseball caps, and in winter caps. Christ wants all of you at all times. So, what we wear on Sunday morning is not as important as what we do with ourselves—presenting our bodies as living sacrifices. But, there is something supernatural on Sunday mornings. God meets us as a church in ways that he doesn’t meet us when we worship him alone. Therefore, we expect to see glory on Sunday morning.