The following is my first rough draft of the presentation for the BAP in four weeks. Any comments would be appreciated.
My presentation will focus upon criteria G Faith show an ability to reflect critically on their faith and make connections between faith and contemporary life.
In my presentation I would like to discuss ways for connecting worship with everyday life.
I consider that worship is about being with God and about being prepared to go out to work in the world. It is a time of adoration and also transformation as we commune with God. Either consciously or unconsciously, worship changes us as God’s spirit speaks to our spirit.
Yet, is our worship always meaningful and relative to our everyday lives? Should worship have connections with the so called mundane world?
Actions speak louder than words and regular services already involve the participation of the congregation through being asked to stand, sit or kneel through to even shaking hands. Actions matter and have a profound effect. The central focus of our worship is Holy Communion, the ultimate point of interaction where the reality of God becomes powerfully present. In turn, this act of remembrance becomes the initiator of further action as we go out into the world.
For most people, worship is confined to Sunday’s. This is not a bad thing in itself but what about the other six days? Can worship be used to illustrate to people ways of incorporating simple ways of worshiping God in their everyday lives?
Most people are busy, so finding time is always the first point of concern. But I think people could make time if they had better understanding of what they could do to create a moment of worship.
I have modelled various interactive, sensory and creative activities during an informal service I have led in over the past year. These activities ranged from writing prayers, images, using lighting candles, reading pre-set prayers, led meditation, music, making paper aeroplanes to just being still in front of smouldering incense. All could be replicated in the home as they are simple but effect actions that do not require expensive resources or extensive preparation or knowledge.
Using a range of stimulus appeals allows for people with different learning styles to engaged with worship. Fleming’s VAK model is widely used to categorize various types of learner which I believe can be related to worshippers. For instance, kinaesthetic learners prefer to learn by doing and so would enjoy more physically interactive events. Whereas as visual learners prefer visual aids such as images and hand-outs. Auditory learners benefit most through listening and so would gain much from led meditations, talks or discussions.
In Matthew 22.37 Jesus said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with your entire mind.” I believe using a range of activities which correlate to their style of learning beneficial to worshipers. My vision for connecting faith and contemporary life is creative activities that draw from everyday life used in worship. Such activities support the deepening of our relationship with God and growth as Disciples of Christ.
Why is it good to worship at home? Spiritual nourishment, reminder of who are, deep into relationship. Self responsibility, compliments Sunday.
Is silence interactive?
How important is it to be rooted in a certain tradition/style of worship?
How useful is understanding different learning styles for considering worship activities?
How do you feel about enabling people to explore developing their own forms of worship away from the church?