Heard a sermon on the John 12 passage about the women who anoints Jesus' feet with perfume and washes them with her hair.
A very great reminder of the need to offer up to God our whole selves in an act of selfless love... it's so easy to become a spectator in worship and in spirituality - always critiquing, never really investing - always studying but never really listening... an easy trap. I was thinking about ways to combat against these tendancies and came up with some ideas:
1. stop judging. This was a big part of the sermon... I'm not the judge of other people's worship... so, if I remove myself from the judgement seat it could free me up to encounter God. I'd imagine this goes for the whole of life not just the corporate worship segments.
2. start listening. Create space for God to speak... intentional listening. Sometimes this is best done in my life through getting outside for a run or a walk... I tend to hear God best when I'm moving but still intentionally listening and looking for Him. But even in corporate worship I could do a better job at listening and looking for God in the midst of the activity.
3. obey. radical, instant obedience is one of the better recipes for godly engagement. When you hear the spirit do what he says. Right away. confession, prayer, worship, singing, witness, and reflection... all of those things and more. One of the great killers of worship is the rational quiet in-you-head conversation between yourself and the spirit... lose the wrestle and just try it out right away... could be surprising!
those are the top three to get us started on extravagant worship - I'll keep you posted.