Sunday, October 19, 2008

Emptiness on Sunday Morning

I had an "empty" time this morning.

It was Sunday morning, and I stood in church with everyone else. We all sang, and I liked the songs well enough.

But I felt nothing.

Don't you just hate that?

I wish I could say that that was the first time I'd ever felt nothing during a worship service. But of course it wasn't. And when that sort of thing happens, I'm left with some choices.

  • I can face the deadness, refuse to participate, and decide there's nothing to Christianity, OR
  • I can face the deadness and put on a good front for the other churchgoers, OR
  • I can refuse to face the deadness and ignore the fact that I'm merely going through the motions, OR
  • I can feel panicked about the deadness and reach deep into my flesh for the feelings I want to achieve, trying to pump up emotions from the rhythm of the music, or from some other human-powered thing, just like any non-believer can do at a rock concert, OR
  • I can pray for God to give me the emotional experience I crave, OR...
Or what? Is there another option?

What do you do under such circumstances? I'd love to read your comments.

Monday's entry will be taken up by "Monday Manna," and Tuesday's entry by "In Other Words," but on Wednesday I'll share what the Lord encouraged me to do with my emptiness this morning. Perhaps it might bless someone as it blessed me.

In the meantime, please share your thoughts

(Photo from Stock.xchng by Zoostory)


elaine @ peace for the journey said...

I had a Sunday just like this one! I spent an hour last night with my husband, fleshing out the matter. No firm conclusions other than the one that "church is what I do...regardless of how I feel." The emotions are not predictable and thus should be put on the back burner. But my faith?

Well, I want it to always be predictable. I want it to breathe, even when I've little air for the process. So rather than examine the externals of my worship, I visit the internal...I visit Christ in my heart, and when I focus on his face and what he's done for me,

I find my worship.


Tami Boesiger said...

Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise--the fruit of lips that confess his name. (Hebrews 13:15)

When faced with that, I close my eyes, push on and sing anyway, concentrating on the words I'm uttering. I offer a sacrifice of praise. If nothing else, I'm developing a good habit of praising God in all circumstances.

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