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Looking for God through stillness, prayer? | Church Corner
Are you a “contemplative,” someone who experiences the presence of God in ways of stillness, reflection and prayer? Do you feel your greatest connection to the Sacred in ways that are different from a Sunday morning church service of modern or traditional music and preaching? Do you yearn to experience God in different ways?
Here in western Washington people experience the presence of God in many different ways. Spirituality, how we experience the expression of God, the Holy Spirit, in our lives, is often found in connection with nature, the beauty of creation all around us. Many find an expression of the Sacred in stillness, reflection, or silent prayer, often in solitude connected with creation.
Others experience the presence of the spirit in Saturday or Sunday (or any day) worship in churches. For some, that presence is alive in contemporary praise music that connects to the rhythm of modern life. Still others find the deep presence of God in traditional worship, with an organ bringing life to traditional hymns. Some find real meaning for their lives in the good news of Jesus Christ read and proclaimed. Still others find a real connection to the Sacred in the sacrament of Holy Communion. So many different expressions and experiences of God.
I think it is a blessing that many people perceive the presence of God in their lives and in the world in so many different ways. That perception of the Sacred, I think, comes from the diversity of how God is revealed to us in scripture.
To say that only one way of experiencing God is “right” is to limit the very nature of God. Here on the Plateau there really haven’t been a lot of alternatives for worship. Church services with a particular expression of worship, music and preaching are the predominant experience of worship.
But what if you experience God in other ways? Back to my opening sentences, what if you experience the presence of God in stillness, reflection and prayer?
A group of pastors and lay (nonclergy) people from different denominations, with the Living Room at Twin Creeks Retreat Center, have come together to begin a Contemplative Worship Experience. The program is all-denominational and nondenominational. All are welcome to attend. While the program will be held in a local church, Hope Lutheran, it is not a “Lutheran” service.
The Contemplative Worship Experience will include silence, stillness, reflective music, reflective reading and prayer. Those attending will experience “lectio divina,” sacred reading of scripture, and centering (silent) prayer. The Contemplative Worship Experience will not include a “sermon” or offering. It will be an opportunity to simply
come into the presence of the Sacred honoring stillness and reflection. All will be welcome to take communion if desired.
Do you long to experience God in different ways? Do you long for the peaceful presence of God in stillness, reflection and prayer? All are welcome at the Contemplative Worship Experience. See the advertisement in this newspaper for details and contact information.