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by Chuck Lawless

As you and your family think about gathering with others for worship this weekend, here are some ways NOT to get ready:

  1. Don’t do any preparation at all. Just show up for worship because it’s the right time, and you might get out of the worship service what you put into preparation: very little.
  2. Worry more about lunch on Sunday than about feeding on God’s Word. We’ve all known families – we’ve been one of those families – that spend more time preparing for lunch than preparing for worship.
  3. Don’t pray for those who lead you in worship. Assume they can do it all on their own without the power of God overshadowing them.  Leave them uncovered in prayer.
  4. Look for reasons not to go at all. If you don’t want to go to worship, you’ll be able to find a reason that seems justifiable.
  5. Accept that nothing’s going to be different at church anyway. Plan to go through the motions of worship, and assume that everyone else is doing the same also. You might fulfill your own prophecy.
  6. Spend some time talking badly about a church leader or member. Maybe you hadn’t thought about that person all week, but now you do because the church service is just around the corner. Let off some steam before you go . . . .
  7. Make sure your phone and iPad are powered up so you have something to do during worship. Plan ahead of time that you’ll most likely be searching the Internet under the guise of using an electronic Bible.
  8. Plan to be frustrated by the music or the preaching. If you start out looking for frustration, you’re sure to find it. You might even miss what God’s trying to teach you.
  9. Assume you’ll be late. That way, you won’t feel funny when you are. Don’t worry about making sure the gas tank is full, your kids’ clothing is laid out, etc.
  10. Expect family conflict when getting ready for church. It always happens, right? Somebody’s going to be mad before you get to church, so just expect it.

I realize that this post surely sounds negative to some readers. My point, though, is not to condemn; it’s simply to show that we sometimes give far too little thought to things that get in the way of our worshiping God well. Correct that today, and have a great time with God’s people this weekend!

10 Ways Not to Get Ready for Worship This Week @CLAWLESSJR Click To Tweet

This article originally appeared at Used with permission.

About The Author

Chuck Lawless

Chuck Lawless is Dean and Vice-President of Graduate Studies and Ministry Centers at Southeastern Seminary in Wake Forest, NC, where he also serves as Professor of Evangelism and Missions. In addition, he is Global Theological Education Consultant for the International Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention. Dr. Lawless was awarded an MDiv and a PhD in Evangelism/Church Growth from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, KY, where he also served as professor and dean of the Billy Graham School of Missions and Evangelism. Prior to that, he was pastor of two Ohio churches. A conference leader and author of several books, including Discipled Warriors, Putting on the Armor, Mentor, and Nobodies for Jesus, Dr. Lawless has a strong interest in discipleship and mentoring. Dr. Lawless is also president of the Lawless Group, a church consulting firm ( He and his wife, Pam, have been married for more than 20 years, and they live in Wake Forest, NC.

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