Preparing for Worship – R. G. Huff.
Like a three-legged milk stool, the church rests on three main purposes: upreach, inreach and outreach — worship, fellowship/discipleship and missions/evangelism. Wilshire does all of these quite well and seems to find the delicate balance among the three … maintaining a fairly level milking perch.
When we joined Wilshire two years ago, we were attracted first to the upreach ministry. That is what we had watched and experienced from our recliners during the COVID streaming-only services. Such great care and attention were given to every detail of the worship hour that we were attracted to this place.
Then we were welcomed into the fellowship by cards, notes, phone calls and emails way before we became embraced by face-to-face beginnings of new friendships and relationships. We were soon impressed with and drawn into the various ways Wilshire reaches out to the local community and around the world with various ministries and enterprises.
From the third stanza of the first hymn we sing today:
Let us love our God supremely,
Let us love each other, too.
Let us love and pray for sinners…
Here we have the descriptors of those three legs of the milk stool, simply stated for us in these hymn lines.
There are times Wilshire carries out these in more subtle ways. For instance, the current art exhibit, Fill the Earth with Music (which, by the way, happens to borrow its title from my hymn 417 in our Celebrating Grace hymnal!), is an expression of all three of these foundational principles:
1. Displaying art which gives glory to the Creative God who shares creativity with various human artists.
2. Providing opportunity for us to visit with each other as we marvel at the various artworks which subtly nurture our faith.
3. And allowing us to invite others from outside our church family to drop by and enjoy the exhibit and have similar enriching experiences.
May the Spirit of Christ sweep through this place today, pouring out upon us that “holy manna” for our spiritual nourishment, reminding us to worship well, fellowship enthusiastically, and do mission aggressively “till our God makes all things new.”