Work in Progress

Baseball, Seminary, Wrestling, and the Dreams and Days of one Mike Work's Angeles experience

Wednesday, August 13, 2003

The Nature of Worship...

After catching the tail end of a well-known comedian's TV special involving the 're-writing' of the Decalogue several weeks ago, his words on coveting stuck. Not because the analogy of advertising that he sardonically incorporated was striking and original; in fact, it was the exact opposite. I'd heard that exact same metaphor used several months ago in a sermon online from a church planter whom I respect and whose work I support.

The exact same words, more or less, from two different guys, with entirely different purposes/intended meanings.
One in a context of glorifying God, calling people to re-evaluate themselves in light of the Gospel
One in a context of mocking what he deemed 'religion' by pointing out how foreign the idea seemed in this culture.

And it was this morning when it really sunk in, what worship is, and what sin is, and how miniscule focuses on certain things are. Worship isn't an act, but a life; a life that belongs to Christ Jesus and is directed towards his glory.
And the same applies to sin, just applied to me, with my glory as the focal point.

And how a neo-gnosticism which focuses on a matter/mind dualism is just off-track, and wrong.

How does this apply to Mike?
Re-evaluation of my thoughts/opinions.

I'm quite skeptical of fitness centers and gyms with high membership costs, especially with a perfectly adequate high school gym and track within minutes of my house. Part of this, no doubt, is a reaction against my past, where I was overly concerned myself with body image and physical appearance, and didn't concern myself with anything that might not fuel my self-projected 'image.' As such, over this summer, I've been overly cautious while in my hometown in regards to such a narcissism, and anything that might encourage it. And it's really been bizarre, in that I've taken precautions to make sure nobody knows if I go for a run, or to create excuses not to lift.

At the same time, keeping God's creation in a healthy condition where it honors the Creator, through working out and running, can just as much be an act of worship as singing during a church service. Is Gold's Gym inherently evil? Not necessarily (yes, it's just now sinking in; rebels are quite dense). While I very well could use my boy as a bragging point, or a device to attempt to convince women to worship me in the bedroom, working out could become worship, and the gym could become a contact point, heck, maybe a jumping-off point for a new community of faith.

And so I'm considering using the free passes my mom has available, and going in today.

As I reached this point in the post, the passage from Acts 10 occurred to me, Peter's vision and the subsequent application to the household of Cornelius, and the thought is whether this change is an outreach of the voice that said 'Do not call anything impure that God has made clean.' A ripple effect, a metanoia caused by God's great invasion of God's planet, as evident in that amazing first chapter of John's gospel, where the Incarnation and its effects are made known.

More to come soon, especially in regards to recent events...


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