Pastor’s Corner – Preparing for Worship

Dear Friends,

Continuing with our discussion of the Order of Worship or Liturgy, we will now dive into the specifics of our service. The first three parts of our Order of Worship have to do with preparation. It begins with the Prelude. During the prelude, the music team is signifying that it is time to take our seats and prepare for the worship service to begin. Typically, the team will play a hymn or song that will be sung by the congregation later in the service. This serves the purpose of allowing the congregation to hear the tune and be prepared to sing along at a later point. In many ways, the prelude is our anthem to rouse our hearts and our minds for why we have gathered – to worship the living God! 

After the prelude, we then have a time of Welcome and Announcements. Cornerstone is a friendly and welcoming church and we want to keep it that way! Typically an elder or pastor will lead this time so that visitors can visibly see and later connect with a church leader. This is also a time that we remind each other of why we are here. Cornerstone’s values are worship, discipleship, care and missions. The announcements that are made during this time reflect these values and invite the congregation to engage in the discipleship of the church. We do announcements at this time so as not to interrupt the flow of worship later in the service. When God’s people are gathered together, it is important to announce ways that we can continue to be the church and serve the Lord.

The final part of the preparation time is called the Preparation for Worship. Here, there is a single verse printed in the bulletin to read, study and meditate on as we begin the worship service. Usually this a verse or truth pulled from the passage of Scripture that will be preached later in the service or it is a verse that reflects the theological heart of what the sermon will be on later in the service. Having the truth of God’s Word right in front of us to look at is a very tangible way that we can prepare our hearts for worship. How do you prepare your heart for worship? 

I’m glad you asked. I think this can start on Friday. Every Friday morning, the church office sends out the electronic newsletter. In the newsletter, there is a portion of the content that gives you a link to Sunday’s bulletin. We invite you to look ahead and read through the bulletin to know what songs we will sing and which Scriptures we will meditate on. This simple act actually helps you in preparation.

As you sit down each Lord’s Day to begin worship, I would encourage you to use the bulletin as a guide to help you focus and pray and worship. The Bible verse that is printed there for you is an excellent tool to help you train your mind and heart to concentrate on Jesus and not your circumstances or the things that are heavy on your mind.

So that is beginning of the service that serves as the preparation time. In the following weeks, we will go deeper into the the other elements. 

See you Sunday.  

by His grace and to His praise, 

Preparation for Worship – May 5, 2019
*This Sunday’s sermon:  “Not One Promise Failed: Good and Precious Promises” Joshua 21
*In preparation for the sermon:  “For all the promises of God find their Yes in him. That is why it is through him that we utter our Amen to God for his glory.”  (2 Corinthians 1:20 ESV)
*Click here for this week’s bulletin. 
*Hymn for the Week:  O Great God
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