Today is the absolute last post on 2 Chronicles… at least until I come back around to it again. Chapter 35 describes the Passover that Josiah led the people to observe, and the account says in v. 18 that ‘There had been no Passover kept in Israel like that since the days of Samuel the prophet…’ For 400 years, the worship of God had not been what it was during those days. What made the difference? Thursday, we discussed the importance of having a leader who is following God with his whole heart and soul. I think there is another significant factor. Preparation. Seven times in that chapter, there is mention of being prepared for worship.
I admit, I’m rarely ever properly prepared for a worship service. With children at home, I’m thankful just to get to church in one piece. But those times when I do have the opportunity to transition my heart and mind from the mundane things to the wonder and awe of God’s presence, something special happens. My preference would be to have some quiet time alone, then a good long music service before hearing the Word taught.
In some ways, that desire reminds me of Apollo 13. (Not the ‘Houston we have a problem” part- although some days I could make a case for that.) In order to conserve power, they had shut down almost every system in the craft. As the astronauts were getting closer to home, Jim Lovell was instructed to burn off some of the fuel. Without the computers, they risked veering off course from the thrust of the fuel burn. In order to stay on the proper heading, Lovell instructed the other two astronauts to keep the earth in the window. As long as they did that, they would stay on course. In other words, use that frame of reference beyond us, outside our situation. Stay centered on that no matter what happens around you.
When my worship falls flat, that focus is what I’ve lost.