First Baptist Church Dalton, GA
Tuesday, May 21, 2013
Together in Christ, Sharing His Love
The Core Value of Sincere Worship
“We value intentional, inclusive worship that exalts God with awe and wonder, celebrates Christ with joy and thanksgiving, and submits to the Holy Spirit in reverence and humility.”
“Worship is both a life lived and an event in which to participate…Worship is true communion with God in which believers, by faith, center their mind’s attention and their heart’s affection on the Lord, humbly glorifying God in response to His greatness and His Word.”
For all of our diversity about styles and personal preferences in worship, at First Baptist we DO know some important things about what worship is and how it is to be conducted. These comprise our core value, the part of worship that is unchanging.
For example, we believe worship is to be ABOUT GOD, not about us. Our time in this place is intended to put us in touch with the God who is SPIRIT and TRUTH. He reveals the truth about us, He exposes our faults and our sin, and offers us forgiveness and restoration. When you truly worship, the focus of your attention is not the choir or the pastor or the outfit your neighbor is wearing, it is GOD ALONE. That core value guides the way we plan and conduct worship here at FBCD. As worship leaders, our task is to point you to HIM, and to serve as the prompters on the side of a stage. YOU are the main characters, GOD is the audience…never forget that!
Another part of our understanding about worship is that it is to be ENGAGING. That is, it is to pull you into sacred space before God. Some days worship will engage you in a celebration, some days in grief over what you have lost, some days in resolve to be more of who God intended you to be, some days it will serve as a battery charge when you are exhausted. Above all, our intention is that worship will change you, in large and small ways, every time you are here.
Another thought. We believe worship is an act of REVERENCE. If worship is truly about God, then our awareness of the omnipotence and awesome reality of God will surely drive us, as it did Moses, to realize we are standing on holy ground, to be humbled and to be like Isaiah: “O God, we are a people of unclean lips…woe unto me!” That is not to say that worship is not a time to smile and enjoy one another and laugh and celebrate. It is all of those, but above all it is a time to recognize who God is and who we are.
There are other elements that shape our worship: our belief that worship shapes our community, that worship is a time for expressing our gratitude to God, and that worship needs to include everyone in God’s family, and that worship is deserving of our very best, in every regard.
Since our beginning in 1847, we have developed a particular style of worship here at FBC. Actually, it is constantly changing, thanks to our music ministers and other staff leaders across the years. Our worship services have not remained static, but have adapted and shifted with styles of preaching, music, techniques, and technology. That will continue… part of what makes worship engaging is its unpredictability, along with its traditions.
What will be unchanging are our core values regarding worship:
- worship that is focused on GOD,
- worship that is intentionally engaging,
- worship that is deliberately reverent.
Our hope is that every worship experience we offer will be unique. They will push us out of our comfort zone some days, and feel like a trip back through time on other days. In the end, what it is all about is HIM and His designs and desires for our growth. Here is our commitment as worship leaders to you: Our worship services will seek to grow us. Sometimes the fare will be very familiar, and other times it will be new and different. But always, it will seek to focus on God, on His Spirit and His truth, to be engaging, and to be reverent.