The Power of The Selah

Power of the Selah pic

I’m on vacation.

A different vacation than most. Actually, a different vacation in that I can’t think of having done this for at least four years. A vacation where I wake up in the morning and wonder what I want to do that day. A vacation where I haven’t set lofty renovation schedules, massive travel plans, or extensive social schedules.

A vacation… to vacate.

And to be honest, going into this week I thought I would go stir crazy (and maybe my writing a blog is evidence that it may still be the case). You see, my daughter got married on Friday and Kerry and I took the week off to get ready for the wedding. A number of people took time to get things ready for the special day and I am truly indebted to them for their love and sacrifice.

I digress.

So when it came time for the dust to settle, the rental stuff to be returned, and the house to get a whole lot quieter, I wondered what I would do with all of this… time.

Well, it’s only day two so I cannot say I have a plethora of nuggets to reveal… but one thing struck me as interesting today.

I brought a book today to my local java hangout to sit and read… and it seemed that a number of people had the same idea, and unfortunately an earlier start time. So I thought I would go down by the river where there was this really calm, peaceful place to sit and think.

The time spent thinking, and not thinking. Reflecting, and dreaming. Reading, and pondering… was like droplets of water falling on a parched, desert land. It was like I was able to think without timelines, dream without deadlines, reflect without repercussions.

In Jewish poetry often times they would have music interludes interspersed within the prose in order to allow people to reflect on what they had heard – in the Bible it can be often found in the book of Psalms. This musical break was called “Selah”, meaning ‘pause’, ‘silence’, or ‘end’.

Any way you wish to interpret it, it was meant to take time to meditate on what you were taking in, and apply it to your context.

We don’t “selah” enough. We don’t stop, reflect, dream, contemplate, examine, or meditate on life, faith, family… you name it. We recognize without observing. We react without consideration. We respond without first taking interest.

We need to selah more. We desperately need to stop hearing things rattle in the trees and first hear the wind blow. We need to stop listening for traffic and first hear the kids laughing in the schoolyard. We need to stop responding to all of the “what to do’s” in our lives and first start asking the “why are we doing it’s” instead.

When we selah, the incessant noise quiets down and the Voice can finally be heard.

At least that’s how I see it,

Selah.

Advertisements

5 Reasons Why You Need Church In Your Life

5-reasons-church

We are currently seeing a world shaken on so many levels because of one choice between two people. A country so fractured so deep that you could almost split a line ‘exactly’ down the middle of the vote.

We are fractured as a whole because we are divided. Divided by race. Divided by gender. Divided by a host of different reasons. Matthew 12:25 reminds us that “a house divided against itself will never stand.”

It is interesting to see where the church lands in all of this. Some people seem to think that the church is archaic, out of touch, and obsolete in today’s culture. They see churches scrambling to try to keep attendance up and people interested in church life.

But the Bible is clear that the church won’t disappear… it will last. It has… and it will continue to (Matthew 16:18).

So… what if the push to go to church is not to keep it going… but rather to keep you going?

For fun, let’s imagine that is the reason why you should be going to church… for you. Here is a list of 5 reasons why you should make the effort in a crazy world to get yourself to church. These are not in order of importance, and they are not exhaustive.

1 – YOU need encouragement. Hebrews 10:25 warns us to not give up getting together. You know what it’s like to be off Facebook, Instagram, or not able to see your friends at Starbucks. You hate being disconnected. Life ends when the phone battery dies!!!! Church was intended to keep us together in order to encourage one another. When you are not there, you are stuck trying to encourage yourself. Try giving yourself a massage… you won’t like it.

2 – YOU need community to grow effectively. By now you’re wondering how stupid you will look giving yourself a massage. Well you need to know that you need each another in order to grow. Read Acts 2:42-47 to see what the first Christians did in order to help one another grow in faith. Christianity was never meant to be done alone on an island. It is a family deal.

3 – YOU have something to give. By now you’ve already tried to give yourself a massage and you agree that it did nothing. Read 1Corinthians 12 and you’ll see a pattern that the church body is better because of YOU… and likewise, YOU are better because of the church body. When you don’t bring your gifts to the table (yes, you have them) then the rest of the body has to compensate and that is never what was intended. Yes, you can use a crutch to deal with a broken leg, but the rest of the body is having to adapt and it slows everything down.

4 – It will keep YOU on track. Hebrews 3:12 encourages us to keep each other’s lives in check. I already know that I desire to be better because of the people that I surround myself with. The lower the bar you set, the lower your sense of accomplishment will be. Let those in church help you when you’re down; just like when you help them up when they are down.

5 – It helps YOU put things into perspective. The Bible tells us in Exodus 20 to remember the Sabbath day (God’s day – Sunday for most churches) and keep it holy. Church is the “Home Free” zone you need at least once a week. You know what will happen if you don’t go to church? Something else will drain you even more. Getting away at least once a week helps get you refocused, refuelled, and refreshed to face the next six days.

YOU need church… and the church needs YOU. The sooner YOU see that and go there, the sooner the church will help a world that is trying desperately to find the answer. Remember, we HAVE the Answer.

Get up and go be the church.

 

C