Where oh where has our true worship gone?

Recently I came across a quote from a book by Gary Erickson called Pentecostal Worship. On page 102 he writes: “Hand clapping and shouts can be just a response to cheer leading, and the people can amuse themselves with a game of group exercise.” Wow! How true this is today! When noise is the objective, and the congregation is bombarded with demands to “get with it,” one cannot help but long for the good old days!

I remember when the worship leaders would step away from the pulpit after a song and allow Jesus to move in our midst. We would throw our heads back and reach our hands to heaven as spontaneous worship filled the room for five to ten minutes after each song. Only when there was a collective awareness of a slight lifting of the Spirit of God would the worship leader step back to the microphone to make an announcement or call out the page number for our next song. Every service was different. God was the leader, the celebrity, and the one we came to see; it was His power and direction to which we were submitted.

Then, it all changed. Suddenly there were “praise singers” on the platform; worship leaders held the microphone close to their own words building a crescendo of noise that was really only an empty echo. The volume increased to a deafening pitch, and “skilled musicians” replaced the simple anointed players of not so long ago. Our hymnals no longer clutter the room, and the words to the songs speak of man instead of deity; earth instead of heaven; our worship instead of His blood. Our ‘agenda’ has replaced His move.

It seems the form of our services is more important than the liberty of God’s Spirit. No longer do we feel the rush of His moving and the tarrying in that place of Glory. We used to see the cloud of His presence, and weep and or worship for hours, so the ministers just gave the service to the Power and waited until next time to preach. Now the desire for entertainment and the urgency of the next item on the agenda has moved God right out the back door; and we like frogs in a pot of hot water just join in the group exercise and don’t even realize that God isn’t there.

Just what do we think the backsliders feel when they return for the Glory they once experienced only to find the same atmosphere of the world they desire to leave? People, call for the old paths, wherein is the good way, and walk ye in it. We need a revival of true Pentecostal Worship, not just more glitzy professionalism that magnifies us instead of Him.

The Mr. Fixit Hat

Darling husbands out there, this post is for you! There is a trick you need to know…it can just be our little secret if you like, but I promise you, learning this trick will make your life so much easier! Oh I know, we women seem so hard to understand at times, and often ‘never satisfied’…but that is mostly because you don’t know the trick yet…are you ready? Here it is…do not put on the Mr. Fixit Hat unless requested!!

This is so easy! When your wife talks about her day, or a certain situation in her life, most of the time she is just hungry for someone to listen! You see, we women are amazing creatures! We come to conclusions by accident really, because we speak things until they resolve out there in the air. You genius men usually think first, then speak… a waste of time in our book, but that is part of the fabulous variety and attraction between us; so we better get used to it.

Here’s the deal. When your lady is telling you her feelings, or the events most current on her fertile mind, and you offer a solution, that is like throwing cold water on her process of understanding. Your well intentioned ‘suggestions’ invalidate her as a person. It is like saying, “Stop! You cannot figure out anything without me, so don’t even try!” Conversation stoppers; that is what sweet Mr. Fixits offer, and they don’t even mean to cause a problem; they are just trying to help…the trick is to know when she needs help and when she just needs to talk it out into the air.

Hubby and I have a little code we use for this now. He will ask if he needs to get his Mr. Fixit hat for this conversation. I can say yes or no. Most of the time I just want him to listen, then carry on a regular conversation. It is still a challenge to communicate between the sexes however, but this little trick has helped us.

The next hurdle is body language! Men! Listen to me on this! When your wife starts to share something with you, and you look out the window, check your phone, or close your eyes and yawn…peace and harmony have just vacated your home! Be Careful! We are watching! Eye contact, active listening, a carefully placed nod and even just a grunt of understanding will do wonders. We will be done soon.

Some of the air has to come out of the balloon before more can be added. Just give us your attention for a little bit. I promise, there will be plenty of dragons to slay, and plenty of things to ‘fix’ as we travel this road together, but we ladies need your ears sometimes so we can let some of the air out of our balloons to make room for your strong wisdom and leadership.

When we need something fixed, we can hand you the hat.

Two Days

Greetings this fine October morning! It has been way too long since I posted. There is a concept I will develop as time allows. There are only two days that matter! This day, and that day. Today and the day Jesus shouts and the trumpet sounds. Only those two days matter at all!
Sufficient for the day is the evil thereof…that’s what the Word says…Now is the accepted time, today is the day of salvation…it says that as well.

All through the Bible God points us to the present! Now faith…Today if you will hear his voice…Give us this day, our daily bread…over and over when we really read His Word, we see his will for us is to live in the present moment. Make the best of our NOW, and let the past go and the future rest in his care.

We must be ready for the trumpet and we stay ready by using each and every ‘today’ to its fullest potential. What can I do this day to fulfill the present command? How can I best use this day to further the Kingdom of God? Start with prayer, proceed with gratitude, walk in love.

Hey, we can do anything when we know there is a close to it. In 24 hours there will be another day (maybe) that I will need to fill with His will for my life, so today, just do it! Be ready and listen for the trumpet, stay prayed through and forgiving others with all our hearts, and treasure each breath.

One way to apply this principle is to focus on the items within your field of vision and mentally name them. Really, give it a try. This practice pulls you right out of the mental gymnastics of what should have been and what it this and that happens. Listen, name the sounds you hear. Focusing on the exact items and events in each moment brings a peace and an acceptance of self and others that really opens us up to the Spirit of God and His leading. Try it. Happy Today!

Role of the Shepherdess – The Workbook & Answer Key

Role of the Shepherdess by Roffie Ensey is a manual for Ministers’ Wives.
it can be ordered from Advance Ministries.

The Dream Goes On

I’ve dreamed many dreams that never came true
Iv’e seen them vanish at dawn,
But I’ve realized enough of my dreams,
Thank the Lord, to make me want to dream on.
I’ve prayed many prayers when no answers came,
though I’ve waited patient and long,
But answers have come to enough of my prayers
To make me keep praying on.
I’ve sown many seeds that have fallen by the way,
For the birds to feed upon,
But I’ve held enough golden sheaves in my hand,
To make me keep sowing on.
– Roffie Ensey

Let your spirit soar to new heights as you study, and thank the Lord for this incredible wisdom handed down to you from a woman who has lived it.

The Role of the Shepherdess is truly a treasure for women in leadership, and it is our prayer and hope that this treasure will be cherished, read and reread, studies and restudied for many years.

May our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, bless your efforts, and keep you sound in faith as you serve him with gladness.
-Marthalee Lyman