When it comes to good graphic design most of us don’t immediately think about churches leading the pack. Most of us especially don’t think about small churches producing high-quality graphic design for their ministries. However, I recently came across one church in a small 800-citizen town in Minnesota that is changing that perception. Along with showing you some of what they’re doing I also wanted to share a few ways that even small churches can get away from the typical clip art that we often see churches using.
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Worship leader, teacher, and blogger Bob Kauflin and the folks at Sovereign Grace Music consistently produce and record high-quality, Biblical music for the church. They are continually offering a sacrifice of praise through the work of good lyrics, good production, and fresh music that is grounded in truth. I love that they sacrifice hours and hours of time they could be doing something else to spend time writing, arranging, producing and recording in the studio. Take a look at this video overview of their newest album, Risen, just in time for Resurrection Sunday.
Do you regularly offer prayer for others or do your prayers always consist of “Dear God, help me….”? One way we can learn to offer our lives as offerings of worship and sacrifice our personal preferences is to learn and practice intercession.
There are a lot of words that get thrown around within the church that I believe a lot of people have no idea what they mean. Intercession is one of them. Intercession is simply the act of coming to someone on behalf of another. In our case, coming to God in prayer on behalf of someone else. You could intercede for someone through prayer in several ways:
- For healing (both physical and emotional)
- For discernment in making a decision
- For any type of emotion or attitude (patience, understanding, etc. The best thing about this is that if someone’s impatient with you and you start praying that they would have patience, YOU’RE going to have more patience for them and more empathy as well)
- To come to saving faith in Jesus
- For safety (travel, persecution, natural disasters)
- That the Holy Spirit would speak clearly through them (for pastors, worship leaders, speakers, evangelists)
Why practice intercession?
1. It’s in God’s nature. God desires that we would be like Him and two parts of His triune nature are intercessors; both Jesus and the Holy Spirit intercede to the Father for us on our behalf. Check it out:
Likewise the Spirit helps in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. Romans 8:26
Jesus, having made the once-for-all sacrifice for us intercedes for us by His very life:
Consequently, he is able to save to the uttermost those who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them. Hebrews 7:25
2. We’re commanded and called. Paul mentions to his audience several times to “pray for each other.” Here’s one clear example to Timothy:
First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people. 1 Timothy 2:1
3. It makes us less selfish. I’ve found that when I pray for someone (particularly someone I disagree with or am struggling with) my heart is completely softened toward them. The more I pray for others the less selfish I become, both in my prayer life and in my relationships with people throughout the day.
How has practicing praying for others helped you in your own life? Is there any way we can pray for you today? Leave a comment and let us know!
This post is part of the How to be an Offering series. I would love for you to join me in proclaiming ways that we can offer our lives as lives of worship! How to participate: write a blog post detailing a way you have been a living sacrifice or highlighting someone’s else’s act of living a life of worship. Link to back to this post in yours and leave a comment below letting us know about it. If you use twitter, use the hashtag #livingsacrifice.
Today I came across this fantastic Twitter update from Eric McAllister:
I’m called 2 lead worship on my job. Here my keyboard connects to a PC nStead of a PA. 2day, this is my #worship & He’s listening (Col 3:23)
- Honor your superiors and their decisions even if you might not agree with them. If you do disagree, state your case respectfully.
- Treat your coworkers with the love of Christ
- Honor your deadlines and view any type of sacrifice you have to make to meet them a sacrifice of worship
- Use your time wisely (follow company policies on Internet time, personal email, etc.)
- Get to work early (or at least on time) to show that you respect everyone’s time
Join Me in Declaring Ways to be an Offering of Worship!
This post is part of an ongoing series on How to be an Offering: Living a Life of Worship. I’d love to have you join me each Wednesday! Here’s how to participate:
- Write a post on how you (or someone else you know) are living a life of worship in your everyday life. This can be anything from choosing to sponsor a child through Compassion international to sacrificing a week of your time to go on a mission trip.
- Link back to this post in your post.
- Come leave a comment with a link to your post.
- If you post on Twitter, use the hashtag: #livingsacrifice
Every day we make choices. We chose this over that. We chose to spend or save. What do our choices say about us?
The subheading of this blog, and the theme of my life and ministry, has become “Living a Life of Worship.” Throughout my life I’ve made many choices that have definitely not accurately reflected that sentence in my life. I’ve used “how to be an offering” off and on for quite a while while never being consistent. So, it’s time for a change, and a challenge.
Starting today, and continuing every Wednesday, I’d love for you to join me in proclaiming ways that we offer our lives as living sacrifices to our amazing and gracious God.
- Read and meditate on Romans 12:1-2.
- Write a blog post and link back here or
- record a quick video with some thoughts or
- Tweet a sentence about it or
- Post a Facebook status update with your sentence and include a link back here.
- Be sure to tag whatever you do with #livingsacrifice.
- If you can’t do any of these things, at least leave a comment.
Would you join me in this challenge of really starting to think about the choices we make, and shifting our thinking into becoming living sacrifices for our worthy Creator?