Give Me That Old Time Religion
I miss the way we used to have real fellowship with each other in church.
Sunday evenings we’d share how God had worked in our lives that week.
We’d testify to the greatness and goodness of God and give Him the glory, out loud, in the midst of the congregation.
I remember Margaret telling how she’d slept away about 12 years of her life because her husband drank and they were both miserable. Her husband sat next to her saying Amen! and Praise the Lord! when she recalled the day God literally woke her up and dried him out.
She broke our hearts and mended them in the very next sentence.
Then everybody was saying Praise the Lord!
We prayed and cried together for unsaved husbands and prodigal kids.
Love flowed freely and we didn’t talk about transparency, but we lived it.
Sharing our joys and griefs came naturally. Sure, we’d all dread it when certain ones stood to their feet. We knew it might go on and on and on, but we listened in love to one of our own.
We’d wait on God to see if He’d speak to us—through us.
Your heart would start pounding hard and you’d know the words about to rise to the surface were His, and they were for us all, afresh that evening. Our hearts burned for Him. Loving God was a shared experience. Thanking Him for His love and His good work knit our hearts and lives. We belonged to God, to His family, and to one another.
This verse from Colossians describes the thing I miss the most.
Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts.
Remember when we all ministered? We all were trusted to pray and hold a confidence. And we told each other the truth, in love. Encouragement, exhortation, and comfort offered without judgment or ‘advice’.
Let’s do that again.
Let’s see if Retro Church can make a big comeback.
Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.
1 Thessalonians 5:11
I’m yearning and burning for it.
Has God stopped working in His people?
Testimony doesn’t fit nicely into the tight schedule of the modern church service, but we’re the poorer for neglecting to praise and glorify our God.
I think that’s part of what has drawn me to a community of believers online.
When God works you tell us, and give Him the glory.
His presence in our lives creates a real hunger in others to reach out to Him for a fresh touch.
I’m asking God for a revival of that old time religion.
The kind where the children of the burning heart talk to each other about the One they love.
Then those who feared the Lord spoke to one another,
And the Lord listened and heard them;
So a book of remembrance was written before Him
For those who fear the Lord
And who thought on His name.
There’s the chance I may be remembering it better than it was!
Would you change anything about your worship experience? If given an opportunity would you share God’s work in your life publicly? Does the whole idea make you want to dive under the pew or run from the building?