a walk-in's perspective

Since being at Redeemer Community Church, it has given me the opportunity to observe how it departs from my own concept of a "traditional service" format. These differences are not things that I would consider as MAJOR issues but no doubt the format, method, and structure of a church service affect the desired ends of that time spent together - thus placing it on a level not warranting neglect.

Change is something that is not easy and frankly, not always necessary, and definitely not comfortable for most congregations - especially when tradition or familiarity is compromised. However, with a barely-3-year-old church plant, nonessential traditions can be abandon, rethought, and restructured fairly easily.

Most of these things I am about to list are those which I noticed on the very first Sunday that we visited. I thought it might be healthy for some to hear a little different approach from a fellow orthodox, Bible-believing, evangelical church. I claim no originality on RCC's part. I only intend to mention observed characteristics.

1) Corporate Reading of Scripture (in Unison)

Depending on the Sunday, there may be one or two of these during the service with the passages on the screen to be read aloud by all. It's a joy to be able to read Scripture on a corporate level with the body - all in unison.

2) Time for Private Confession of Sin

After we sing one or two songs the congregation is given an opportunity to confess sin to the Lord. This is a helpful reminder of who we are worshipping and our own unholiness. Shameful how I can forget my sinfulness so easily...

3) Time after the Sermon for Contemplation and Prayer

This is just a few minutes where the congregation, before they interact with one another and forget what they just heard, are given the opportunity to reflect on the truth just presented and how it is applicable in their own life. I'm amazed at how helpful this is - to have everything stop briefly to ponder the truth just brought before me.

4) Programs are not the Primary or Typical Means to Facilitating Discipleship

Discipleship and speaking the Word to one another are no doubt emphasized but encouraged to take place by the member's own initiation with each other - not the elders organizing a meeting or program. People don't have the luxury of relying on a title or involvement in a program to say they are involved in "ministry." Programs are not evil. But like any type of structure, it can distract from the primary purpose.

These are just a few observations - not criticism of those who depart from this in any way.

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