A Little Praise with My Worship

Let me explain.

It’s not that I don’t like my own Church. I do. I don’t think that there’s any other creed that I could accept almost entirely.

It’s just that I have needs.

I’ve tried to fill these needs in other ways, like blasting CCM on my iPod while driving, all the while ignoring the funny looks I get from passersby. But my hands have to stay on the wheel and my eyes have to stay open, or I’ll be meetin’ Jesus a lot earlier than either of us has planned.

I’ve watched some preachers on TV, but for the most part, they’re nuts. I say that with all due respect to nutso televangelists.

I’ve tried reading books, but there’s only so much you can get by proxy. Sometimes you just gotta do it.

So, I asked Sewaa at work today which church she goes to. I need to do this with a friend, so I don’t feel so alone and strange. I know I’ll feel strange, but I don’t want to feel alone.

The Catho-Mormon stage has been dead for a while. The quasi-Mormon stage just hasn’t been working. Maybe a Mormoncostal  balancing act will be just the ticket.

Now, I know some of you are probably wondering why I feel the need to blend. Why not just dump the whole Mormon thing once and for all?

Well, there’s this nagging little thing I like to call a testimony.

There are things that have been God-whispered straight to my soul. There are precious few things I can claim to know, but those few things I do know, I know beyond any doubt. I just can’t deny them.

And why not blend, if it brings me closer to God?

Isn’t the closeness the thing?

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6 responses to “A Little Praise with My Worship

  1. The heart sometimes has so many needs.

    Wish you well with yours.

  2. The purer and more spirit-filled worship you seek is also in the temple. But the worship there is not showy or loud or ostentatious like at some pentecostal or evangelical services. But if one seeks a place and time within Mormondom where the likelihood of finding the Spirit is greatest, it is in worthily going to the temple.

    By all means, check out the evangelicals and pentecostals. In my opinion, out of all the denominations of Christendom, they are the ones closest to us doctrinally, because they believe in personal revelation, and in the possibility and desireability of constantly walking in the Spirit.

    However, you will likely find some of their worship services a bit undignified if they get chaotic with multiple people speaking at once, or if they have conversations between preacher and audience, or when have an organist play background music while the preacher is talking, and using the music to emphasize points in the sermon. I kind of liked that when I was a teen. But I went to a funeral service as an adult, and the music during the sermon, with the organist adding flourishes at certain points in the sermon, made it sound like a soap opera. And as you noticed in the movie, some practices might just seem juvenile, like spiritual kindergarten.

    I think you’ll eventually find what you’re looking for in the LDS services and sunday programs (and firesides and singles conference, etc) , and you’ll also help create what you’re looking for by giving talks and lessons yourself that are more spirit-filled. And as you mature, you’ll figure out how to have spiritual experiences at church even when the speaker or teacher doesn’t have the Spirit.

    At this point, I think you have a hunger that you want others to feed, and you’re looking for places/situations to be fed. As you get more experience under your belt, you’ll learn how to feed yourself.

    That said, there are things we can learn from our brethren in the evangelical and pentecostal communinities (as we could probably learn things from people of all churches and all faiths).

    I admire the evangelicals and pentecostals because:

    1) They are not ashamed of Jesus. They are not afraid to admit they believe. Jesus said he doesn’t want people to be ashamed of him.

    2) They believe in outright miracles, and are not ashamed of that either. We should believe more in miracles, like Moroni said.

    3) They are not afraid to proselyte. We should be less afraid to proselyte. We tend to think you have to be full-time or ward missionary to proselyte.

    4) They believe in the goal of constantly being in the Spirit, and Spirit-led. We do too, with our doctrine of the Gift of the Holy Ghost and spiritual promptings etc, but Mormons have a tendency to be “checklist” types. Outward obedience is a necessary goal, but sometimes we ignore the inward things.

  3. mormoncostal

    that should be a movie, starring either oprah or julia roberts.

    you will find bookslingers assessment of pentacostals accurate, though you might be in for less of a shock if you set aside the nice things said and look carefully at the downside, because that downside is a HUGE part of their worship services.

    just by way of fair warning.

    have fun

  4. Just as point of clarification, I’m not looking to other services to replace my regular worship; I just want a supplement. I’m still LDS and have no intentions of converting.

    I think there will be both good and bad aspects, but I’ll know for sure when I actually go and have the experience.

    Bookslinger,

    I think you are right. When I mature in my faith, I won’t need any sort of supplement, but I’m just not there yet.

    While evangelicalism interests me intellectually, and as a way to connect with the Spirit in a different way (the way I connect when I have my own personal praise and worship sessions), there are parts of it that I just don’t believe and would be hardpressed to believe.

    There’s nothing really that I don’t believe about Mormonism, I just don’t always feel that fire.

    And all the blame for that lies with me. I don’t feel the Spirit constantly because I don’t live he gospel constantly.

    So, I try to connect in this other way until I am ready to progress further.

  5. apropos of nothing, perhaps, but a good friend of mine (a pentacostal preacher, as a matter of fact) used to be fond of shouting from the pulpit ::

    if you want to FEEL the fire, you need to stand IN the fire

  6. I can think of a lot of Mormons who need to be yelled at, too. Myself included.

    And in the days before microphones and loudspeakers, when you preached to several hundred or more, you did have to literally shout.

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