Experience silence in the midst of your busy day. Take some time to relax into a time to be with God.
Revelation 11:15-19 (NRSV)
Then the seventh angel blew his trumpet, and there were loud voices in heaven, saying,
“The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord
and of his Messiah,
and he will reign forever and ever.”
Then the twenty-four elders who sit on their thrones before God fell on their faces and worshiped God, singing,
“We give you thanks, Lord God Almighty,
who are and who were,
for you have taken your great power
and begun to reign.
The nations raged,
but your wrath has come,
and the time for judging the dead,
for rewarding your servants, the prophets
and saints and all who fear your name,
both small and great,
and for destroying those who destroy the earth.”
Then God’s temple in heaven was opened, and the ark of his covenant was seen within his temple; and there were flashes of lightning, rumblings, peals of thunder, an earthquake, and heavy hail.
Popular culture offers us Revelation as escape: the trumpet sounds and we are all whisked away…away from the suffering, the fear, and the violence. But read the Book of Revelation and you’ll find a lot more about endurance than escape.
Bad times come, but God’s people endure. The powers of evil rail and rage, but God’s people take risks in order to live faithfully…and they endure. Injustice and violence and suffering increase, but God’s people still lift their voices in praise and worship. They endure.
This worship scene, like so many in Revelation, seems unlikely. It is not a peaceful Sunday morning service, with polite parishioners tucked away in their pews; it’s more like combat: bold, majestic, and defiant. You get the feeling that bad stuff could happen at any moment.
It’s also beautiful…and reverent. No other book in the New Testament contains so many scenes of worship—or so many images and phrases that have become part of hymnody and liturgy.
I read this and I wonder: what’s MY excuse for not focusing on Christ today? What’s MY excuse for not making today a day of worship?
God of grace and glory,
of judgment and mercy,
of righteousness and love,
hear my prayer.
Help me to pay attention to you today;
help me to offer my life to you as a living sacrifice today;
help me to lift my voice and sing your praise today:
no matter what.
Go with God.