Popular writer Gordon MacDonald reminds us in his soul searching book, “Ordering Your Private World,” about the danger of sink holes. His source of inspiration on the subject comes from the extra large number of sink holes that have occurred in Florida. When underground streams drain away in times of drought the ground at the surface loses its underlying support. Suddenly and without warning the ground just simply caves in swallowing houses, public buildings, cars and even helpless people. It is a frightening experience to say the least and it can be deadly.
MacDonald’s reference to sinkholes in Florida quickly turns to sinkholes in our private lives. There are many factors that can cause a “cave in” in our lives. Just to name a few: fatigue, failure, a bitter experience, disillusionment about goals or purposes. It happens when there is a vacuum or void in our lives, in our inner space, in our private world. Sink holes come when we give all our time, effort and attention to the “things of this world” and neglect the nourishment of our soul and a personal relationship with God.
I am entitling my sermon for next Sunday, “When We Truly Worship”. My text will be Isaiah 6:1-8. Let me encourage you to read and meditate on this text in preparation for worship on April 29. Hebrews 10:25 says, “Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another – and all the more as you see the Day approaching.” True worship can and should take place privately and publically. The Bible teaches and encourages both kinds of worship.
Think of worship as feeding the soul. Most of us miss very few meals when it comes to physically nourishing our bodies. Can you imagine how spiritually nurtured we would be if we fed our souls the way we feed our bodies. The fact that we don’t is found in the sinkholes that occur in our private world.
A word from Anne Morrow Lindbergh, wife of the famous aviator in her book, “the Gift from the Sea,” is worthy of our full attention. She said, “I want first of all to be at peace with myself. I want a singleness of eye, a purity of intention, a central core to my life that will enable me to carry out…obligations and activities as well as I can….I would like to achieve a state of inner spiritual grace from which I could function and give as I was meant to in the eye of God.” Private and public worship are indispensable in achieving such a goal. If you want to avoid sinkholes in your private world do not neglect the nurture of your soul.
In His love, Charles