While I’m not real sure that I like this title, I thought it might get us to consider a reprioritization of our monthly First Wednesday service. For many reasons that I hope to share with you, I believe this service is increasingly critical to the spiritual vitality and power for mission we need at Rock Bridge.
First, let’s answer a more basic question: What is First Wednesday?
Practically, it is a monthly gathered service where we seek to realign (we tend to get out of alignment over the course of 30 days) our minds, hearts, affections, and ambitions to God. We do this by singing more songs than we do during the weekend service because singing truth exalts God and stirs our affections for Him. We also realign through observing the Lord’s Supper as we proclaim the death of Christ and ponder all of its benefits. Finally, we spend dedicated time in prayer as a church for our people who are hurting or in crisis, for power to be His witnesses, and to seek His will and favor over the vision God has for RBCC.
Perhaps, a few analogies will help:
- First Wednesday is the thermostat of Rock Bridge, when we set our spiritual temperature to be white hot for God.
- First Wednesday is family time to be together as Rock Bridgers in song, prayer, and communion.
- First Wednesday is like charging your smart phone when the battery is dead.
- First Wednesday is immersing ourselves in the ordained channels of God’s grace to be refreshed, reminded, and rejuvenated for all of Who God is for us as loving Father, gracious Savior, and ever-present Spirit.
Here are several reasons for making First Wednesday a priority:
We can move no further than we pray. Back in June, the Holy Spirit impressed this thought upon me: ‘Everything you want to see happen at Rock Bridge can’t happen without prayer.” I was humbled, convicted, and yet excited. I realized that we have a built-in, already-on-the-calendar service to really seek God—First Wednesday. However, the real question is not one of how to pray or when to pray, but do we really believe in prayer? Jesus did. The first churches in Acts did. Rock Bridge, we must too! We want to experience God, and we want to see people healed, lives changed, souls saved, 10,000 connected to life in Christ … so let us pray!
We are leaky vessels and need regular re-fillings. My affections for God wane. I grow self-absorbed. I forget His blessings. My joy grows dim. I forget about lost people and hurting people. I withdraw to my little world. As this happens to me personally, it adversely affects the Body I am a part of corporately. So together we must fight this drift in our souls by enjoying the specific means or channels God has appointed for His grace, presence, and truth to flow through. The Word of God is one of those channels, which we heavily emphasize during the weekend services. However, persistent prayer, communion, and corporate singing are other channels that help us get full of Him and the ones we enjoy at First Wednesday.
Communion is crucial … it is a regular feast of faith! May we never think of Communion as an extra or a simple symbol that does little more than remind us of the Cross! Communion is a banquet of God’s blessings for us in Christ, and we need to observe it more than we think! First, there is power in “do this in remembrance of Me” (I Corinthians 11:24). We are prone to forget, prone to take for granted, prone to minimize … so God instituted a memory aid that we can touch, taste, and feel. Second, there is power in proclamation (I Corinthians 11:26). The Lord’s Supper proclaims, it preaches, and faith comes by hearing (Romans 10:17). Today we live by faith, not by sight (2 Corinthians 5:7) and deeply need the proclamation found in Communion! Therefore, the supper nourishes the faith that delights in God, strengthens our soul with the joy that Christ is alive in us, deepens our love for Him, and helps weaken the alluring, yet deceitful, satisfaction of sin through the superior satisfaction of Christ.
So Rock Bridgers, would you feast with us at First Wednesday? Would you pray together with your and for your church family? And would you be blessed by the fresh fillings of the Holy Spirit that is promised to those who ask and seek (Luke 11:13; Ephesians 5:18)?