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SKMB On Mission Together: November 24th, 2021

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O Come Let Us Adore HIM

“Man’s chief end is to glorify God, and to enjoy him forever.” – Westminster Shorter Catechism, 1647

“Rejoicing in the Lord is an audacious act of faith in Christ and a bold defiance against the darkness threatening to engulf us.” – Beth Moore

In my thirty years of pastoral ministry, I have never felt a greater need for unity and harmony in the Mennonite Brethren faith community. Equally, I have never felt as disillusioned by the toxic influence of our current social climate upon the Body of Christ – ideological, philosophical and political. Much of our sense of being on mission together for the sake of Christ has been made ill by this unhealthy reality. This fall I was pained in my spirit about how to encourage the people under my care during Advent.

After days of Jacob-like wrestling with the Lord, appealing for a blessing of understanding, the Holy Spirit impressed upon me the word “worship”. Shortly thereafter, the 18th century hymn O Come Let Us Adore Him began filling my thoughts. Could it be that worship is a potent catalyst for unity in advancing the Gospel; a prophetic word that I need to champion for such a time as this?

Perhaps wholehearted worship during Advent could serve to bring unity as we lift our individual eyes from those things that divide us to the One who can unite us – JESUS. As we come to adore JESUS, are we ignoring or disregarding our deeply held concerns? No, in worship we are, in fact, bringing them to the One who is our peace; the One who breaks down walls of hostility. In worship, we prostrate ourselves and lift Him up.

This Advent, I pray that the sound of our collective voices being lifted up to adore JESUS will also inspire us to reach past our often myoptic fleshly agendas to the great commandment and commission to which our Saviour has called us. Let us genuinely worship JESUS – to adore Him – humbling ourselves and declaring Him Lord. Let us worship JESUS in truth and spirit proclaiming not ours, but His, will be done.

I am not naïve, and I do not hold to unity at all costs. I understand the complexity of the challenge before us, but there must be voices that continue to boldly advocate togetherness for the mission. There is no silver bullet, but with JESUS there is always hope and opportunity. In our sacred moments of worship, can we make space for JESUS to speak to our motives, thoughts, words and deeds?

This Advent, it seems to me that worship can serve as a powerful channel to bring the refreshing waters of unity to our family of faith. And so, my friend, come let us adore Him.

-Rev. Phil Gunther, DM