Reflections on church celebration

Over the years I’ve been to all kinds of churches, para-churches and spiritual organizations.

When they would have their times of celebration, either planned or spontaneous, they would have all expressed the belief that these times of praise were meaningful, fulfilling and even life changing.

Some of the ones I experienced were. Some –many, most, actually– were not.

Over the last 10 years, three have made a profound impression on me. Two have been in the U.S. — Catalyst Atlanta and Newspring Church. The other has been in Brazil — Refuge Grace Church (Ministério Refúgio da Graça) in Fortaleza. I’ve only experienced Catalyst once, have only been to Newspring twice and to Refuge Grace Church six times.

In each, I was ushered into the presence of the Creator. Jesus was present. The Spirit showed up. I was awed, affected and transformed. I left ready to charge the gates of hell with a watergun because I knew I mattered to God and that where He was the impossible would become commonplace.

When I measure a church “service,” which should be a celebration and a clamor of desire for divine manifestation, I always mentally use these three as a measuring tape.

Now I have another to add to my list… Lifepoint.

What took place last night at the new Midtown campus was nothing less than phenomenal. I went anticipating excellence and was caught off guard by the exceptional.

I’m still processing the event this morning.

Never, ever settle for good when chasing after God. Search unendingly for the phenomenal.

2 responses to “Reflections on church celebration

  1. Thank you Joe for putting into words what (so far) I have failed to find a way to articulate. I stole this post for my own blog. Hope you don’t mind….

  2. patrickandchristy

    Joe, the worship we had in the “new” home for Grace Refuge in 2007…a shelled out former used car dealership still sends chills down my spine because of how strongly I felt the Holy Spirit that night and how it made such an impression on me spiritually.

    Coming back after that trip and going back to the church I was at was like, “wow, is this it.!?
    Thank God we have a church like that now and so happy to hear about how God is moving at Lifepoint. Whenever we talk with someone from or in Wilmington, we tell them to check you guys out.

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