“But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him.” John 4:23 ESV
I woke up excited. Elated. Joyful. Ebullient. Exuberant. Wow. Uncontainable love and passion. Oh, what a dream I had! No microphone. No rehearsal. No set plan. No agenda. No preacher in a suit. No choir with the songs memorized. No disco lights. No high tech speakers. Nobody at the front of the room. Not all the congregants facing the front. There wasn’t even a room. Or building. Or church. We were outside. A mass of people. Don’t know how big. Numbers didn’t matter. Nothing around us did. I was somewhere in the crowd. Suddenly my voice cried out. I was compelled to pray. Oh, to pray! To the heavens! To the Lord! I prayed. Loudly. So loudly with my voice a microphone didn’t matter. I prayed and praised! Praising God! With such unfathomable devotion. Word after word. Praising God. Like I was leading people in prayer. Suddenly everyone stood! Our hands were raised to the heavens. Others stepped in to pray. No prayer agenda. No formula. No one person at a time. All at once. Unrehearsed. From our hearts! Such genuine love and adoration! No prayer list. No prayer requests. Prayer. Praise. Oh, how we prayed! Oh how we praised the Lord! With a hallelujah in our hearts, what joy, oh, it was magnificent! It was as though nothing separated us from the heavens. We weren’t focused on those around us, not on the world, not on what we wore, not on the clock to see when the service would end, not on what others thought of our praise! It wasn’t a service. We were worshiping God in spirit. In truth. From the depths of our beings!
I awoke with unstoppable prayer and praise in my heart. I could never describe the atmosphere of what transpired, the thrill, the ecstasy of praising and praying to the Lord with no limitations placed on us by man-made traditions, by what so many of us do in church on Sundays, by what we do formulaically in our quiet time with God, if we worship and spend time with Him at all. The amazingness of it all, of worshiping God unreservedly, our faces, hearts, lives, and hands raised to heaven!
It had been a dream. Now I was back in the world of countless churches, pastors, and people holding rock concerts in church, watching the clock, working on increasing numbers, watering down God’s Word if referring to it at all, of so many of us living for ourselves instead of for Him. If only my dream were real. But it could be, couldn’t it? One day it will be. In heaven. But what about now? Should we not break free from the traditions of man and worship God the way He desires? With our hands and hearts held high toward the heavens where He lives and will reign forever!