How to: Worship from home
A guide for those limited by COVID -19
By Avery Northwood
It’s Sunday! Time to put on a decent outfit or even business casual. Time to do makeup, prep the kids, consume a hasty breakfast, and hustle out the door for church!
Enter COVID 19.
Many of us are finding ourselves shut-ins, quarantined and handicapped by the Coronavirus pandemic. Cut off from churches, friends, pastors, and workplaces. Our routines have been surrendered or taken by force and we are left to pick up the pieces in all the areas of our daily lives.
In the context of church, many of us find ourselves watching a digital screen on a Sunday morning, whether we’re blessed enough to have a church capable of live streaming the service, or whether we are using this as a “God-given” opportunity to “virtual-visit” the church down the road. (Let’s be honest, you’ve considered it).
Christians of all denominations are being presented, many for the first time, a variety of options for how to “attend” online church. Will it be from bed or from the couch? Will I make pancakes or waffles while the preacher rambles? Will I wear slippers or socks? (maybe both)
So what does worship from home look like?
Step one: Consider what you do as acts of worship on a regular Sunday, and do them as you would. Do you dress up? Do that. Do you pray before the service starts? do it. Do you connect with your church friends? consider reaching out. Do you sing the most loud and the most proud in the service? Wake the neighbors!
That’s it, there are no other steps.
One blessing of Coronavirus is the golden chance to reflect on what you do in your routine and why you do it. Why do we sing? Why do we dress up? Why do we sit in one place for more than an hour? Here’s a hint, it’s not just for us or for others. It is or should be entirely meant to glorify and honor our Creator and Savior God.
We gather on Sundays for fellowship, prayer, teaching, and the Eucharist as in Acts 2:42. Continue to fellowship as you are able, continue to take part in the Eucharist as your church provides, continue to absorb the teaching and preaching of the church, and pray without ceasing.
JUST because you seem alone or are just with your family, doesn’t mean that the same living God isn’t listening and watching! Now, more than ever, you are being given a singular chance to determine what drives your worship. It can be either a devotion to our great God, or it can be some lesser, misguided devotion to earthly distractions.
I can only encourage you to find some new and creative way to expand your acts of worship. Dress nicer, sing louder, set up a space in your house to help you focus on the service, message friends to get their prayer requests, send in your tithe or offering, seek out the sacraments from your priest and church, and no matter what comes, continue to press in with your prayer. May you be made to look more and more like the image of Christ our Lord.