We worshipped yesterday with a congregation made up of many people from Africa. We visit this church once a year with the team our daughter goes with on her summer trips to Ghana. It is always a wonderful time being with other parts of the body of Christ. This time it made me think: why don’t we do this more often? Not go to this church, necessarily, but visit other churches that are not like the one we frequent, worship in different ways with different parts of the body of Christ. After all, we’re going to spend eternity worshipping with these people!
The thought sparked an analogy between our physical bodies and our spiritual ones. I’ve heard that when you exercise using the same routine, the same movements, that your body gets so used to it that it doesn’t have to work as hard and thus, stagnates a bit. That’s why it is important to change up your exercise routine occasionally. It struck me yesterday that perhaps it is the same with our spiritual “exercises.” We get into our routine, we get used to the way we do things. And, perhaps, we get a little comfortable, a little less focused on the Lord and more going by rote. What if, occasionally, we stepped out of that comfort zone and fellowshipped with other parts of the body of Christ who worship differently from us? Perhaps they are more free and expressive in their worship. Perhaps more reserved. Perhaps more liturgical. Just coming at worship from a different perspective, even if we don’t agree with that congregation on every point of theology, opens our eyes to Christ in a new way.