Listen to your favorite love song and imagine the one being addressed is God. This is what Sunday worship should be like.—
Pastor Jon Pohl (@pohl_jon) September 27, 2012
To be sure, I understand the impulse. Would worship have such passion! And there is truly a strong line in the Christian tradition, stemming from scripture itself, that speaks of intimacy and desire for God. Without a doubt, Sunday worship would be greatly improved in most churches if people felt that God was beautiful beyond measure and greatly to be adored.
But worship is more than the expression of a lover for the beloved. For we’re not talking equals here. A love song is what is sung by one who is (or wants to be!) in a relationship of mutual affection. But worship is the interaction between creature and creator, between sinner and redeemer, between disciple and Lord. It is not one of mutuality.
Because of that, there is much more that should happen in worship than love-drenched praise and the expression of adoration (as important as these surely are). In worship, we listen to God. We are corrected and inspired. We are fed. We confess. We profess. We resolve to live better and do differently. All of these are part of complete worship. And they cannot be subsumed under the rubric of a love song.