Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Worship (corporate) (10/04/07)
TITLE: No Services This Weekend
By Joanney Uthe
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“At least this year, it’s supposed to be dry. Remember last year when I lost my shoe in the mud? And how you fell and slid down the hill? Then they had the four-wheelers helping just about everyone out of the parking lot? What a mess!” Jada wrinkled her nose at the thought of all that mud.
“Oh, but what is LifeLight without mud?” Maria joked. “Besides, we could come up with a spiritual connotation for the mud…umm… a reminder of our need to be ‘cleansed’ by our Savior.”
“Well, last year I needed that visual. I can’t thank you enough for insisting I go with you. But this year, I know Jesus as my Savior. You can keep your mud. Are you sure we want to camp?” Jada had never slept in a tent before.
Once their tent was set up, the friends sat down to plan their weekend. They didn’t want to miss any of the national bands on the Main Stage, but they also knew and followed some of the local bands playing on the other stages. And they had a commitment to work a shift at a ministry booth near the Children’s Stage. Excitement filled their voices as they discussed which bands were a “must see” and which were worth making an effort to catch.
“The Main Stage will get done about midnight, and then we can go to the Late Night Dance Party. By the time we get to bed, you won’t mind camping at all,” Maria told her friend as they headed from the campsite to the festival grounds.
“Three days of live Christian music and dry ground to walk on. I can’t wait to hear all my favorites!” Jada danced to the music coming from their destination. “They’re starting to play. Let’s hurry!”
The weekend went fast and before they knew it, their favorite Christian bands had played their last songs and left the stage. They were exhausted but pumped Sunday morning for what was being dubbed a city-wide worship service, although the festival drew more people than the entire population of the city. The girls had heard a rumor that the organizers were running low on wristbands to put on festival attendees. They had started with 300,000.
Jada thought they had one of the best spots for the Sunday service as she raised her hands in worship. Her favorite praise songs from church were being sung by the original artist, the one heard singing them on the radio. Looking around, she saw faces of every color and knew they represented many different churches and denominations. This must be a taste of what it will be like to worship in Heaven.
With high spirits, Jada settled in for the message given by a nationally known speaker. She had enjoyed listening to the bands, being in a crowd that didn’t need much crowd control, and being spiritually fed. Sad that the festival was almost over, she couldn’t wait to come back again next year. She wouldn’t miss it for the world.
After saying how honored and pleased he was to be able to share with them this morning, the speaker went on to praise the festival and its organizers. He then launched into his message about the unity of Christ’s body coming together in events like this. Jada felt convicted when he spoke of how each person needed to make the festival about God, not about the bands, the speakers, or the organizers. They were all there to worship and give glory to God. Jada realized that her motives for being at LifeLight were self-centered and not on glorifying God. She decided LifeLight is a taste of what it will be like to worship in heaven, only we won’t notice the others we are worshipping with, because our focus will be only on our God.
Jada felt a new sense of peace and delight as she committed to live her life focused on God. It had been a perfect weekend.
LifeLight, the nation’s largest free Christian music festival, is held each Labor Day Weekend in Sioux Falls, SD. In 2008, for its 10-year anniversary, LifeLight will be expanding to include a Colorado festival in June.
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