This Thanksgiving season I feel very grateful. I am thankful for my loving family and our happy home. For most of us, home is the heart of our Thanksgiving gathering. We drive miles through unbearable traffic, pack into planes and fly across oceans-to arrive at the place we call home. For this one day celebration, we painstakingly prepare. We spruce up our decor, cook delectable dishes, set the table and eagerly wait for the feast and fellowship to begin. In this warm atmosphere of family and friends, we partake without reservation. We eat until we are full and savor the notion that this gathering will happen again next year. Our Thanksgiving feast is a success only when all have fellowshipped.
I also feel very grateful to be the Pastor for Worship here at Sligo Church. To me this sacred responsibility to create an atmosphere of worship can become the heart of our gathering. Our church home is where our family celebrates God’s goodness during the sacred Sabbath hours. We travel from miles around through traffic and across rivers to gather in the Lord’s house. We admire our beautiful edifice and praise our active ministries. We enjoy our fun-filled festivities. We painstakingly prepare to experience God in each week. We plan the worship flow with our Sligo family in mind, and eagerly wait for the fellowship to begin so we can partake until we are full. To us, it is a menu of worship filled with delight.
Yet God’s house is a house of prayer for all people (Is. 56:7). When we come together family, friends and guests alike should feel warm and welcome. It is time for us to prepare God’s house for our community. Guests and friends should be regular partakers in our hallowed time of worship. For our Sabbath celebration, every room should be spruced up, the decor fine, the ambiance warm and inviting. As we prepare God’s house for community fellowship, He sets the tone for a feast of praise. The sanctuary and our demeanors will be full of love and grace as we eagerly greet God’s invited friends and guests. Our church home will reflect our transformed lives. This warm atmosphere will create a delightful menu which makes every smile, hug, hymn, Scripture, prayer, sermon, and offering a weekly feast of praise.
In this welcoming ambience, we will give God glory without reservation. In this warm atmosphere of thanksgiving we will set a welcome table on Sabbath day and eagerly bring friends and family into our fellowship. For each guest, our church home will be the heart of our gathering. Our lifestyle of worship that attracts the community will fill our souls and create an eternal feast of praise.