It's Not Enough—But It's a Start

It isn’t enough. I am wholly convinced that it isn’t enough.

World Communion Sunday isn’t enough. All Nations Heritage Sunday isn’t enough. It isn’t enough to sing a song from a different culture on occasion. It isn’t enough to pray for a nation and community other than your own on occasion.

It isn’t enough to have people who are different from you present in worship but not celebrate the gifts they bring and incorporate them into the community of believers. It isn’t enough to have them “worship their way in their service,” even if you share a building.

It isn’t enough to do ministry in and for the neighborhood where your church is located. It isn’t enough to hand out food or flyers and think you’ve done your part.

It’s a start—but it’s not enough.

In this issue of Reformed Worship we are celebrating the first steps churches are taking on the journey toward worshiping as the full body of Christ. This journey begins with prayer and honest examination. Who are you as a church? Who lives in the community where you are located? Are there walls that need to be torn down, divides that need to be bridged? How is God calling your church to be a light to the world by living out the truth that “in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith . . . you are all one in Christ Jesus” (Gal. 3:26-28)?

Each congregation’s journey is unique. Some have been traveling a long time; others are just beginning.

In this issue of Reformed Worship you’ll notice that there aren’t as many “pick up and use” resources as usual. We do have another fabulous worship series from Nathan Drake at Christ’s Church in St. Peters, Missouri, and another creative Noteworthy column from Martin Tel, along with several other resources. But the bulk of this issue is made up of stories of congregations on a journey toward a fuller expression of the body of Christ as they learn to bring various cultures together.

Each congregation’s journey is unique. Some have been traveling a long time; others are just beginning. For some the journey began with the hard work of reconciliation—work that continues on a daily basis as they deal with issues of justice and acts of injustice. For others there are linguistic challenges. This journey is not easy; none of these churches has “arrived.” It’s not enough, but it’s a start.

As you read this issue, ask what your congregation can learn from each situation shared in these pages, even if your context is different. Pause, listen, reflect, and pray. Pray that God will reveal how your church in Christ can further extend God’s kingdom. Pray that God will show you where it isn’t enough and where more can be done, because only when Christ returns can we rest from this work.

When we stand in heaven with the saints of all ages and all places and with worshipers of all languages and colors, only then can we say, “It is enough. We have arrived!”

Rev. Joyce Borger is senior editor of Reformed Worship and a resource development specialist at the Calvin Institute of Christian Worship.

Reformed Worship 116 © June 2015, Calvin Institute of Christian Worship. Used by permission.