September 3, 2020

Gathered and Scattered

Written by Tripp Prince

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – September 3, 2020

Praise the Lord! Praise the name of the Lord; give praise, O servants of the Lord, you that stand in the house of the Lord, in the courts of the house of our God. Praise the Lord, for the Lord is good; sing to his name, for he is gracious. Psalm 135:1-3

Psalm 135 is a psalm of direction and exhortation written to the family of God. We are called to offer our lives and even the whole of creation back to God as a sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving. We are meant to see every area of our lives as lived under the guiding hand of God, trusting that he is good, gracious, and loves humankind. This is what we are called to do week in and week out when we gather for worship, to reorient the whole of our lives to Christ and his Kingdom.

However, it is hard to read these words without thinking of the remarkable events of the past few months! When was the last time that you “stood in the house of the Lord, in the courts of the house of our God?” And even more fundamentally, when was the last time you explicitly and intentionally offered praise to God?

It is good and right to connect church attendance with praising the name of God. It is foundational to what it means to be a Christian and member of the people of God! As such, I hope and pray, that even in the middle of a global pandemic, you have found creative ways to continue the habit of faithful church participation, even if it is online or socially distanced in some other way. However, we run a great risk of isolating this life of praise to our gathered times of worship, important as they may be, failing to tend to the scattered parts of our lives. Every aspect of life is meant to be lived as a form of worship offered to God, and in these challenging days in which we find ourselves, this temptation is only heightened.

When our normal rhythms of life with God are upended, we must passionately pursue new patterns and habits of being that keep us connected to our Lord. And to be even more direct, your life of personal devotion has never been more important. No longer can we simply expect the corporate faith of the church to carry us along. We can no longer live under the illusion that one hour a week will be sufficient to nurture the life of Christ in our hearts and in our homes.

If you are unable to gather as the church in the house of God, your home must become a church.

For the church to not simply survive but thrive in 2020 and beyond, we must boldly embrace the wholehearted pursuit of Christ in every area of our lives, and for the vast majority of Christians, this Kingdom-minded living begins in the home with the family. And while this year has been unspeakably disruptive to the gathered, corporate life of churches across the country, might our Lord in his wisdom be inviting us to remember afresh that which we all too easily forget: the renewal of the church must begin with the renewal of families.


Father, in this time of chaos and disruption, help our homes to be sanctuaries of praise in which we live faithful Christian lives in every area of life, we pray through Christ our Lord. Amen.


How can your home and family life reflect the worshipping life of the Christian family?

Related Reading

Joshua 24:15; Proverbs 3:33; Colossians 3:14

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