What to expect when you visit
Oh come, let us worship and bow down;
Let us kneel before the LORD our Maker. (Psalm 95:6 NKJV)
We are always happy to have visitors, so the first thing you can expect when you visit our worship services is a warm welcome. We are the family of God, so we want to make sure you feel right at home.
If you are not familiar with the churches of Christ, one thing you should know about our worship is that it is completely participatory. What you will see is not a concert or entertainment. You will not see a show or an extravagant presentation aimed at capturing your feelings and imagination. What you will find instead is a group of people simply praising God with all their heart, sincerely participating in every part of worship.
When we sing, everyone joins in the singing with one voice. It doesn't matter whether your voice is gorgeous or more of a "joyful noise"—what matters is that you are singing from the heart (Ephesians 5:19). When we share the Lord's Supper in communion with Christ and each other, every member partakes of the emblems (1 Corinthians 10:16-17). When we pray, everyone prays in their heart following the thoughts of the prayer leader, our thanks and supplications going up to the Father in unison (1 Timothy 2:8). When we give, we each give according to how we have prospered the previous week (1 Corinthians 16:1-2). And when the Word is preached, we all listen attentively, searching the scriptures together to apply them to our lives (Acts 17:11).
As a visitor, your participation is, of course, optional, although you will certainly be uplifted in either case. If you are a member of the church of Christ, we welcome you as family, and expect you to participate fully in the worship.
So why do we worship this way, while so many other religions are putting on a show? The simple answer is that we want to ensure that every aspect of our worship is rooted in Biblical authority (2 Timothy 3:16). You may wonder why we meet on Sunday, why we don't use musical instruments, why we have the Lord's Supper every week, or why we encourage members to give freely instead of tithing. We would be happy to study with you about any of these aspects of our worship, but the simple answer to each is that this is the pattern we find in the New Testament, and that is what we must follow.
We also want to make sure our worship is God-focused. You may come and sit in a pew, but when it comes to worship, God is the audience, and not us. And an amazing thing happens when we take the focus away from entertaining ourselves. First of all, God is glorified, but then we ourselves are edified for having participated. This is what true worship is all about.
Not unto us, O LORD, not unto us,
But to Your name give glory,
Because of Your mercy,
Because of Your truth. (Psalm 115:1 NKJV)
We hope you will come visit us soon!