By Gary Amirault
For most of us who have experienced boxed lunches at any time in our lives, they usually become a routine of pretty much the same food, the same taste. During my many years as a Christian, I have been in dozens of different denominations and literally hundreds of different churches. It got to the point where I could pretty much tell what denomination or movement I was in without looking at the sign outside the church. Simply by being in a few services in a particular church, one could come pretty close to figuring out what denomination the church belonged to. The church leaders and the congregation managed to “box” the worship in such a way that one could tell what man-made denomination created the church.
I suppose there is something to be said for knowing what food you are going to be served every time you have lunch. One will never be surprised by getting something one can’t stand to eat. But then one will never experience the variety and riches of all the foods that are available. One of the problems with “canning” worship (after all, isn’t that what church is supposed to be about?), is that it is the same all the time, there is no room for anything different – anything different can’t be of God because the “true” form of worship had been already pre-established. After all, it’s in the church bulletin, we have to follow order. God is a god of order, isn’t He?
Variety IS God’s “Order”
A glance into nature and the universe reveals that our Creator is VERY creative, He likes variety. Each and every human being, each fingerprint, each snowflake is unique. There are thousands upon thousands of species of living things on this planet revealing that God has no problem with variety. I enjoy looking at clouds. I am always amazed at the variety of patterns I find in clouds and the many different thoughts stirred in my mind as I gaze at them.
I have had many wonderful times worshipping our heavenly Father and Creator. Most of them have not been in a box called “church.” Most of them have been face to face in all the varieties of ways we meet fellow human beings created in God’s image, at work, in stores, on sports fields, in the highways and byways, ghettos, etc. “Where there are two or three gathered in my name, there I am in your midst.” Real assembling to worship our Maker is not about a one or two hour ordeal Sunday morning, it’s about real life. “I have come that you might have life and more abundantly.” He didn’t come to box you in, He came to set you free.
Get out of the man-made boxed lunch you have locked yourself up in and “taste and see that the LORD is good!”