Monday, November 12, 2012

Freedom to Worship

Thankfulness Day 12

Yesterday our church observed the International Day of Prayer (IDOP) by gathering with a few other churches from the community and praying for the persecuted church throughout the world.  Specifically, we prayed for Turkey, Iran, and North Korea.  In these places, Christians, who are quite scarce, can't worship publicly without consequence.  They preach the Gospel knowing it may cost them their life.  They preach the Gospel knowing it could cause them torture and assault.  Despite the hatred that is shown towards Christians in those countries, Christians still seek to spread the Gospel of Christ.

A man from Turkey shares his testimony of his salvation and the beatings and torture that came along with it.
Now picture this.  I was in the IDOP service and the worship music started up.  It was loud.  Louder than I am used to.  I have to be honest, during the first song, I was somewhat distracted with a feeling of anxiety because it was so loud.  Perhaps it was the drums.  Perhaps it was the smoke machine.  Perhaps it was my pride.  Just because these folks were using a different and louder means to worship God, doesn't mean it was any lesser of a worship to God!  Right then and there, I was convicted.  My pride was pierced.  How could I be so critical of worship because it was loud???  I mean, these fellow Christians, my brothers and sisters in Christ in countries like Turkey, Iran, and North Korea can't worship like that!  I have a freedom to do just that in our country---and in a very safe place, for that matter.  So, today, and hopefully everyday, I am thankful for the freedom we have to worship God in this country.  I pray that I don't so easily take it for granted!

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