In this day and age there is a wide variety of churches with an equally wide variety on stances on how we should present ourselves at church. While most churches hold the “Come as you are” mentality, encouraging people to wear whatever they want (as long as they are wearing clothes, no nudity please); there are the select few churches where they don’t officially say “Dress up”, but as soon as you walk in the doors you wish you had gotten the unspoken memo.
Growing up, I went to a Salvation Army church, that’s right it’s a church too not just a soup kitchen. I will say that more so than not my mother encouraged us to dress up on Sunday, and jeans weren’t an option until my later teen years. So when I say dress up, I mean dress pants and a blouse, skirt and a blouse or a dress for myself. My brother was in dress pants and a button up or something similar to the effect. My mother, however, was dressed up in her Salvation Army Uniform; something unique to the organization. I would go into detail but I believe that it is better explained here. And for the record I personally love the idea of the Salvation Army uniform and would wear it proudly if I were still a part of that church, I support what it stands for and the meaning that lies in it.
Now I understand that the idea of dressing up every Sunday can seem ridiculous. I mean it isn’t like God is judging us based on our appearance right? In fact, this very sentiment is what fuels most churches “Come as you are” policy. As per usual I find myself down the middle of the argument, I think people should be comfortable when they come to church but I also think that they should change out of their pajamas before they get there… you know, put a little effort in. But what if this issue was beyond the idea of clothes? What if this was about something so much more than jeans, dresses and suits (oh my!)? What if this was not about what we are wearing but who we are wearing?
My question today does not lie in the threads of your clothing but in the makeup of who YOU are as you enter God’s House. I want you to think back to last Sunday (or the last time you went to church) and ask yourself the following questions:
1. Were you rushed and anxious because you were running late?
2. Were you thinking about the service before it even began? (How long the congregational prayer will be, will the worship be good, is there a guest speaker, I hope the coffee is better than last week…)
3. Were you distracted by the frustrating morning with your kids and spouse?
4. Were you stressed out from the pressures of work or your finances?
5. What were you feeling? Happy, Sad, Angry, Tired, Frustrated, Annoyed…
6. If God was going to speak to you… would you have heard Him?
Believe me, there are Sunday’s where I would rather attend Bedside Baptist then actually go to church. Why? For many reasons, and the usual is that I’m tired. But I get up and go anyways, because I want to be there in case God needs me to hear something, or in case someone else needs to hear something from me. On those days where I am literally dragging myself through the doors I do a self-check as I enter the building.
1. This is the Day that the LORD has made, I will rejoice and be glad in it (one of my favourite songs)
2. Church is a privilege… it is somewhere I GET to go… not somewhere I have to go
3. If I want to meet God then I want to be focussed on God and not on myself
I leave my distractions at the door, my troubles and my stresses I surrender at the cross and I walk in KNOWING that God will move. Some days God will use me to move in others’ lives and other days He will move in my life. I know that not every day is my turn and that’s okay. Yeah there are Sundays where I leave the church going “that could have been better”… heck we are all human! Church won’t be perfect and we won’t be perfect but man does God ever use those imperfect people do complete His perfect plan.
So why should we even try to present our best selves if God is going to use imperfect people anyways? Well, because God deserves our best selves… in fact, he deserves so much more than that but we give what we can. Don’t get caught up on the fact that “what we give will never be good enough” but concentrate on presenting your best self to God.
So you don’t have to wear a ball gown to church this Sunday to present your best self but try and remember these five steps:
When you Greet People… Greet them knowing God’s love is OVERFLOWING into their lives through you.
When you Worship… Worship with full adoration for your SAVIOR, because he deserves so much more.
When you Listen… Listen eagerly to the message and EXPECT it to apply to you (not your neighbor)
When you Give… Give with a grateful heart of what’s been given to you.
When you Leave… Leave with excitement and anticipation as to what God will do in your life this week.
1 Corinthians 10:31
CONNECT WITH US
SUBSCRIBE VIA EMAIL
Privacy: We hate spam as much as you, so we will never share your e-mail address with anyone.
SUBSCRIBE TO THIS BLOGS RSS FEED
AND GET ARTICLE UPDATES