My Wordspace

A dumpster full of various musings over life, God, scripture, and any random thought that may fly by meanwhile. Comments welcome.

Out of My Comfort Zone

Posted by Iszi on June 30, 2004

Greetings, Readers.

Tonight, of course, was Tuesday night. That means one thing for sure, for me: The Living Room (TLR for short, from hereon.). Another thing it means, on occasion (when my wife is in a good mood) is some hangout time with my church buds at some local eating place. So, TLR was great as usual. Had a local band, Ezekiel’s Eye come and play a couple of their songs, and a great message delivered by Pastor Rob, whom we haven’t seen in awhile. (Aside from leading worship and speaking every week in TLR, he also leads worship every Sunday, but has been gone on other ministry-related business this past week and, albeit his stand-ins all did great in their respective jobs, was missed greatly. We’re all glad to see him back again, rockin’ on!) To wrap it up tonight, we had about a half hour of “tehila”. Tehila, derived from the Hebrew word “Tephellah”, is roughly translated as praise and worship. More specifically, un-scripted praise and worship. That is, to worship without a specific song or words in mind, or specific path laid out to follow. Just pure worship from the Spirit inside you, to God.

Rob had our drummer get up and just start beating out whatever came to him, then handed out various small percussive instruments (tambarines, bongos, rattles, etc.) to other church members who started playing, some along with the drummer, some to their own beat. The rest of those gathered just started worshipping and praising in their own Spirit. Some sang, some danced, some prayed. A mike was left open for anyone who wished to use it. Some people were led to scripture by the Spirit, and went to the mike to tell what they were shown. It really was an awesome thing to behold, and to be immersed in.

However, I myself felt out of place. In a sense, that was the intent of the exercise to begin with, so it was only natural, but I felt even more so out of place because this is something I’ve been struggling with for awhile. When it comes to practicing and exercising my faith, anything that is not really “led” by someone else seems to be a difficult area for me. Yeah, tehila is an unfamiliar concept for most people to start, but it’s really the more standard, simpler things that I also have problems getting myself into that really make this bother me, like quiet time, prayer, and Bible study on my own. Now, I could praise and worship God all day and all night, with songs that are familiar to me, but if you take away the script, I’m just lost. I could pray, with all my spirit, the Lord’s prayer (Matthew 6:9-13), or any prayer that I learned to say at the table as a child in school, but take away the recital and tell me to do it on my own, and I hit a wall. I’ll gladly join any Bible study group to learn more about the Word and its meaning, but for me to sit down, just open my Bible and start reading without guidance, I don’t know where to start.

Doing this blog has helped me some, but I still feel like there’s much more that I should either be doing, or be able to grasp at this point, and it deeply bothers me that I don’t. These are some of the most basic and simple, and most prominently recognized concepts and practices in Christianity, and yet I as a born-and-raised Christian just can’t seem to get it! Is there something wrong with me, here? Something I’m doing wrong, or not doing right? I feel like I should call to someone for help, yet I worry that because of the nature of the issue itself, should I receive help, I will only be able to progress as long as I have that help, and when I get “pushed off the nest” on to my own again, I might fall flat back onto my face and be back where I started. Yet also I worry that if I don’t get any help at all, I may never overcome whatever obstacle this is that is blocking me from leading myself in these exercises which are so vitally important to growing in my relationship with God.

So, now what to do?

– Iszi

Song of the moment: Delirious – Rain Down

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