Worship is much more than a sermon, prayer, and a collection of songs at church on Sundays. True worship involves a pattern of revelation and response: God, by his grace, reveals himself to us, and we, by faith, respond. As seen throughout the Bible, this has been a consistent pattern.
God reveals himself to us as our God. Therefore, we must love him with all that we are.
Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. -Deuteronomy 6:4-5
Paul reminds us that God has shown us undeserving and unfathomable mercy. Therefore, we must respond by offering up ourselves to him.
Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God - this is your spiritual act of worship. -Romans 12:1
Then little children were brought to Jesus for him to place his hands on them and pray for them. But the disciples rebuked those who brought them. Jesus said, "Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these." When he had placed his hands on them, he went on from there. (Matthew 19:13-15)
As Jesus was traveling to Jerusalem, knowing He was on His way to do an enormously important task--to take up the cross and die for the sins of the world--it is important to know that Jesus was not being interrupted by the children and being kept from His task; rather, He desired to stop and bless the children.
As more and more children are being born and growing up at Covenant Chapel, it is a high priority for our church to stop and take the time to bless them and teach them of our loving God who has redeemed us through His only son, Jesus Christ, and not treat them as the disciples did, thinking that they are interrupting or burdening the tasks of adults.
Our children sing praise with us and after a prayer of blessing are dismissed to their program which we call "Covenant Kids."
Our Covenant kids children's ministry is divided in these stages: infants, crawling and walking, preschool and elementary and above. We have a infant room that provides extra privacy for parents who need to stay with their child. Beginning with our crawling and walking stage we are working on transition our parents back upstairs to participate in worship and our children to transition into Sunday School. Parents are on a rotation in order to allow parents not on rotation the opportunity to worship. Around age 2.5 to 3 our children transition into our next stage of preschool where they participate in a bible study lesson and craft. Our older children have a bible study lesson and workbook that they go through.
We welcome anyone in our congregation who is a member or a regular attender to be an active part of our Sunday Ministries team. More specifically greeting and welcoming people, reading the Scripture passage, and providing after service refreshments are all ways we can serve one another as Christ served us.
In this day and age, it is easy to get caught up in a self-service type of worship service, where one comes to church only to receive to one's heart's content (and inversely, leaving the church when not satisfied with the worship service). We at Covenant Chapel understand that it is about coming together as a community of believers and worshiping together as one body and that the Gospel is about giving just as much as it is about receiving. And giving of our time and hearts to bless others is a God-glorifying and church-edifying way that we can respond to God's goodness and experience deep, meaningful and Gospel-centered community.
Everything we do as servants in our worship service must point to Christ. We do people a terrible disservice when we make the worship all about the preaching, the music, or programs and events at church. Our goal as Sunday worship servants is to always help worshipers participate in the pattern of revelation and response: to remind people that God has graciously revealed Himself to us and to encourage people to respond faithfully.