Worship From Home | March 15
This Sunday we gather in many locations as families, community groups, or even virtually as a collection of individuals, but we are no less the church. We do not cease to be the Body of Christ when we are sent out each week to our neighborhoods and workplaces, and so we are the church today even as we are not under the same roof. This weekend is a reminder that liturgy means “the work of the people.” Consider how all of us in small gatherings will not be observers or consumers, but practicing this work of the people as we pray out loud, sing, give, read aloud God’s scripture, and engage with the sermon.
Whether you gather as a family, community group, group of friends or even if you’re by yourself at home, this service is more than just watching a sermon online. It may take some stretching of your personality and even some vulnerability, but here are some thoughts on how to “do church” in small groups or as an individual. With all of these elements and ideas, consider sharing the responsibility by asking multiple people to lead.
*Parent resources are located at the bottom of this post.
Start by praying and asking God to lead this time; to speak, shape, and guide our hearts and minds. This is an opportunity to set the tone for this specific time, rather than just turning on an online sermon as you cook breakfast or do the dishes.
Each Vintage Church service begins with a song or two of adoration. Perhaps you or someone in your group is a musician and can lead a time of worship through singing, but if not, you can sing along with songs from our playlist on Spotify or Apple Music.
CONFESSION AND ASSURANCE
After spending time adoring God through singing and prayer, we enter into a time of confession. This is a moment in which we acknowledge the choices we make that are unlike the ways of Jesus. This allows us to repent, or turn back, to God. When we do this, instead of experiencing guilt and shame, we remember that Jesus has erased the power of sin, and through him, we are completely forgiven and covered in his grace. This kind of prayer helps remind us of the ways that the Holy Spirit is healing us bit by bit and shaping us to be more like Jesus. To close this time, consider a song that declares and reminds us of our assurance of pardon, such as “Before the Throne of God Above.” Sing it or listen to it, receiving this beautiful truth of God’s full pardon of our sins through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
Next, read aloud the scripture passage we’re studying throughout this series. The Lord’s Prayer is found in Matthew 6:9-13: Pray then like this:
“Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name.
 Your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
 Give us this day our daily bread,
 and forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
 And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
(Matthew 6:9–13, ESV)
At this point, click on this link to watch the sermon on the Vintage Church YouTube page.
After the sermon, we respond. Remember that we are a church body, and the sermon we just listened to does not terminate within us. Instead, when we are given a glimpse of God in his holiness and mercy, our response should be one of adoration and praise of him. This is a mark of a believer; our natural response as forgiven in Christ, with new hearts in which the Holy Spirit dwells is to praise him. During this time of response, sing along with songs from the playlist, in confidence that even if you’re the sole voice in the room, that you are part of Christ’s church and the voices of his followers are lifting up praise at the same moment. It is also the time to declare our dependence on our Good Father by giving tithes and offerings. Both declare Jesus as Lord and our trust in him. In light of Taylor’s sermon, ask God “How much should I keep?” Rather than “How much should I give?” To give online, visit this link.
In addition, the Lord’s Supper is one of the sacraments that mark the true church, and was instituted by Jesus Christ. It sustains and strengthens faith in the gospel, and we view this not only as worshipful obedience to Christ, but as a means of grace by which we are reminded of our place in God’s family, the church, as adopted sons and daughters. This can be done at home, and we recommend reading aloud from Matthew 26:26-28. If you’re gathering together over a meal after the service, you can also begin the meal by reading the Matthew passage and taking communion, which is much more in line with how the early church would practice this together.
A benediction (Latin: bene, well + dicere, to speak) is a short invocation for divine help, blessing, and guidance, usually at the end of worship service. The benediction serves to remind the people of the promises they have heard in the preaching of the word, so that they may be encouraged to go forth with confidence in the truth of the Gospel. It can also be a reminder for God’s people start the new week with the assurance of God’s blessing. Note: this is not merely a “closing” but rather is integral to the “sending” now appropriate for a forgiven, instructed, and blessed people.
As a benediction today, we encourage you to read aloud Ephesians 3:20-21.
If you’re able, print these resources and be creative with your children at home! There are questions, music, and crafts to go along with lessons that can be done at home – pick and choose what you are able to do with your resources.
Vintage Students Resources (For discussion with middle and high school students)