Hoyt W. Brown
While I am confident that God has been present in my life from the very beginning, my personal experience of God begins early in my high school years while on a MYF retreat. On that particular evening I went beyond the mere intellectual acknowledgment of God, to a personal experience of Gods love in my life. Moments of such intimate encounter have been a part of my life since that night.
I have experienced God in many ways and places. I have encountered God in creation, through ritual, through music, through scripture, through the Church, and in my interactions with others.
From all these experiences I understand several things about God.
- God is the creator of all that is.
- God desires to be in relationship with me.
- God has revealed Gods self through scripture, creation, and the Church.
- Gods greatest self-revelation is in the person of Jesus of Nazareth.
- God continues to reveal self through the action of the Holy Spirit.
- Through each form of divine revelation I understand God to be filled with love and compassion for each of us.
Christian life must be grounded in worship. Scriptures lay the obligation on each of us to adore the Lord your God, him alone shall you worship (Deut 10:20, NSRV). Worship helps us meet that obligation, an obligation that each person must take on. The world today seems to have lost sight of the fact that our real service is worship.
Worship is at the center of the Christian life. All worship begins with the acknowledgment that our God is great. He is great because He created the world. He is great because we realize that all of creation exists to make God known to humankind, and to draw us into communion with God. God seeks us. Further, through worship we recognize and confess that Christ died for the life of the world . Worship brings us into the very presence of God. True worship brings the Christian into relationship with God. Worship is the joyous gathering of those who are to meet the risen Lord and to enter with him into the bridal chamber. In response to finding ourselves in the presence of God, we offer our sacrifice of praise in song, in prayer, and in our lives.
I invite you to join us as we offer our lives in service to the risen Lord.
Hoyt W. Brown
Pastor, Faith United Methodist Church