The Inside Column 30/6

Posted in: The Inside Column- Jun 30, 2013 No Comments

Good morning and a very warm welcome to all. If you are visiting us today we hope you feel at home and can stay for a hot drink after the service.

Someone asked me this week “Why do we lift up our hands when we pray or sing? “.

My first thoughts were that in worship and prayer we are free. This means a  freedom to raise our hands or not, to lie on the floor or not, to dance or not, responding to the Spirit however we sense His leading. But what else does it mean when we lift up our hands? Here are some thoughts I found helpful.

I Surrender…

‘Come out with your hands up!’ shouts the Police Officer when they finally  corner the man on the run. There is a sense of surrender in the lifting of hands. We say to God that our life  belongs to him, and that He as Lord can guide and lead us.

Lift Me Up

When my children raise up both hands and come towards me I don’t hesitate to take them into an embrace. Lifting our hands can be an indication of our need for God to hold us, to show us his comfort, his closeness, and his love.

I Give / I Receive

To be open-handed speaks of a willingness to give freely and to take up whatever task or expectation may be  offered.

I Declare

The raising of a hand to give an oath signifies making a solemn promise. A hand raised in worship can declare the truth about God’s rescue, His power and His authority.

I Bear Up

In the Old Testament ‘lifting up’ usually describes an action (to bear up, to carry). In lifting our hands we are stating our  intent to take up the work of God’s Kingdom.

 

Of course the physical raising/opening of hands is not really the point. It is the  internal posture which is most important; to encounter with God and believe that as we reach out to him with our hearts he will meet us with his life-giving Spirit.

 

Quiz evening this Friday night. It’s still not too late to book a table, bring some friends and help us to raise some money for the Stoke Youth work.

 

Have a great week!

 

Yours in Christ

 

Philip

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