Out of Place
There is an uneasiness we deal with every Lord’s day. We want to worship. We love God and we know that He is our good. We know that His Word reveals that He’s glad to meet with us and to bless us. But we are sinners. We do not deserve to fellowship with Him. We come into His presence as those who are out of place, as those who are humbled before His majestic holiness.
So we have a time of confession in our morning service. We acknowledge our sin and our trust that He forgives sin in Christ. We mourn our disobedience and we rejoice in His deliverance. We bow before Him and we’re lifted up by Him. We’re sinners who don’t belong before His holiness and yet He makes a way for us to draw near to Him. It’s an awkward pull in the soul, a tension that we will live with until our glorification.
As an assembly we’ve talked about being whole persons, consistent in heart and word and body. That triggers a certain level of discomfort because we’ve been trained to keep it all in and that God only cares about the heart.
Something has to give. We can either be awkward in believing one thing and doing another or we can be consistent in expressing the awkwardness of our hearts with our bodies. At the moment I’m referring to kneeling during our prayer of confession.
We decided to try it and here are a couple of key things. No one is obligated to kneel. We believe it is appropriate for the assembly and we encourage everyone to use the opportunity. But, again, believers are free to do it or not to do it. Also, we are not practiced at this, the space between our current pews is not optimal for it, and some will not be able to do it no matter how much they want. That’s okay.
It is awkward. And here’s the thing: confession of our law-breaking to the King we serve is awkward. We’re not uncertain about His forgiving heart, but it is a difficult nonetheless. It’s okay that it’s difficult to express it outwardly as well.