This entry concludes a week-long series from guest blogger Doug Lee on whole life worship.
This last of the four forms of worship that we’ve looked at this week is often the hardest for missional churches. In many missional churches and house churches, the extent of community is the small group. Yet there is benefit to gathering together with other believers in a corporate setting where the focus isn’t primarily toward each other, but upwards toward God together.
In fact, if corporate worship isn’t available in a particular church, people will find a way to get that need met somehow—often visiting traditional churches that they are not a part of simply to experience the worship services. This in turn can “traditionalize” the missional community into more of a small group or Bible study and lose the missional focus.
The reality is that there’s just something in most followers of Jesus that says, “I need to see that I’m part of something bigger.” One solution is to create a monthly worship service or campfire gathering, even if it’s only 30 people or so. With 30 people together, you can pool your resources, have music, get the artistic people involved, and have someone facilitate the liturgical elements. This particular kind of activation and engagement of the heart with God helps us bring him a united praise and petition before him in a way that simply can’t be done at the individual or small group level.
Different types of churches tend to put all their eggs in one (or two) baskets—they just choose different baskets. Yet we need all four in some way: personal worship time, worship in the everyday ordinary, whole life community, and the congregational worship gathering.