Throughout history, many Christians have been able to attend Church Services. Worship at home has only been the alternative for believers who couldn’t attend S
When I gave my life to Jesus I was able to join a local Church. A couple of years later I wasn’t able to continue to attend there and I couldn’t find anywhere else I could get to regularly. I had to find a way to worship and to keep the Lord’s Day without the fellowship of others. And at that time I had no access to live-streamed Church Services, as we have today.
Biblical Basis for Worship
Let’s take a simple overview of how believers have spent time with God. In Old Testament times the pattern for worship was set out in the order of the Tabernacle and the various feasts and Offerings – You can learn much about these in Exodus chapters 20 – 31. The observation of the Sacrifices and Feasts was then continued down through the ages.
In the New Testament, the old covenant was swept away, we were given direct access to the Holy of Holies and the presence of God. This happened with the Crucifixion of the Lord Jesus Christ. And the Curtain between the outer court and the inner sanctum of the Temple was torn from top to bottom – see Matthew 27 v51; Mark 15 v38.
There are a few indications in the New Testament of how the early Christians worshipped after the Resurrection. We know
- they broke bread together whenever they met – Acts 2 vs42
- Paul and Silas sang Psalms – Acts 16 vs 25
- they held prayer meetings on the river bank – Acts 16 vs 13-15
Patterns of Worship
Church Services were eventually laid down to facilitate those that led them, to make sure that they were done in a Godly way. Although sometimes this has meant Church laws being instituted that have no foundation in Scripture. In the last 100 years, we have seen ‘a breaking away’ from the ever-stricter forms of worship and a return to the freedom of the early Church. Sadly this has sometimes meant the emphasis being on fellowship rather than a relationship with the Lord. Nothing on earth can replace the encouragement of Christians gathering together. But our prime goal for times of Worship must be our relationship with God.
In the current climate of the pandemic and social distancing Christians are having to find ways to worship at home – something many would not have otherwise experienced.
7 Ideas for Awesome Worship at Home
1. Decide where you will be spending time with the Lord. Tidy up so that there are no distractions. Set out your Bible, devotional reading, and anything else you will be using.
2. Visual cues are beneficial for focus so why not collect up a few items that you can keep just for your ‘Sunday’ use? For example a throw for your chair or a cushion, perhaps a mug for a refreshing cuppa, even a candle that you light just for your ‘service’ time.
3. Fix A Time. Make a REGULAR appointment for your time with God. It’s all too easy to snuggle under the bedclothes for a few more minutes or to linger over another cuppa for a little longer. Before you know it your worship time will have gone and other things will be demanding your attention. Try keeping to the same time as the Church Service(s) you used to attend if that helps. Maintaining the structure of your day (and for your week) helps you to be a good steward of your time.
4. Get dressed as if you were going to Church. Apparently getting dressed for a specific event helps tune your brain into the activity ahead. (Coincidently online business people find they work more efficiently if they dress for work). People used to get dressed in their Sunday best for Church and it can help to make your worship time feel special – after all, you are meeting with the King of Kings!
5. Have a time of worship music. Choose what you want to listen to/singalong to before you begin. You don’t want to waste precious moments hunting for the perfect CD/track during the time you would have been worshipping. For spontaneous worship set your audio player to shuffle tracks from your favourite worship collection. Don’t worry if you think you can’t sing God is listening to your heart!
6. If you are used to a set Liturgy use that but don’t be afraid to experiment too. This is a wonderful opportunity to explore extended times worship or extemporary prayer within the service framework. Likewise, if you are used to a free-format Service why not explore the rich heritage of formatted services like those in the Book of Common Prayer. Adapt them as you feel appropriate.
7. When you choose to watch a streamed ‘live’ service from a Church participate by following along physically. Stand if you can when singing or at least try raising your hands. Close your eyes, and/or kneel when praying, and sit to listen to the sermon. Try taking notes whilst the Minister/Pastor is speaking or
The Benefits of Worship at Home
You will see from these ideas that preparation is key. Some people may argue that they prefer spontaneity. Can I just say that meals have to be prepped even if only a snack – someone still has to make the sandwich!
Worship at home gives you the opportunity to experiment by giving more time to one area of the ‘service’ than you could in a corporate setting. If during the prayer time you feel led to pray more, pray. Do you feel you are connecting with God powerfully in worship? Keep going! When a verse of Scripture jumps out of your reading for the day, meditate on it!
Speaking from personal experience, I want to encourage you that it IS possible to grow in faith and Godly relationship even if you can’t go to Church. Yes, it does take some preparation, perhaps some discipline too. But it is oh so worth it! Think of it like this: when you have a best friend you anticipate spending time together, and you prepare for that time. You have to allow flexibility in your time together to accommodate the friend’s needs/desires.
Try these ideas for your next time of worship at home at prepare to be delighted!
If you would like to know more
- How to Read Your Bible
- Bible Study you can find lots of resources at Honey Bible Study
- Recommended Resources for Devotionals| Music | Bibles
- Sign up for the Newsletter and get your free copy of the MMW Devotional ~The Lord’s Prayer
Helen CroninEditor -in-chief
Helen Cronin lives in the UK with her husband and two furbabies. She is the founder of the gardening website Leaves From My Garden and the website dedicated to studying the Word of God – Honey Bible Study. When not glued to her PC you will find her walking her dogs in the countryside near her home or gardening! Helen gave her life to the Lord Jesus when she was 19 yrs old and has served in a number of ways including administrative roles, speaking at a Bible Conference and latterly through writing.