Have you ever seen a group of people play a tune with handbells? Each person holds two bells and all the bells play different notes. As a director leads them, each person plays one of his bells at the proper time — and the result; a beautiful melody.
So what if one person told everybody else to be quiet, sit down, and listen to his/her bell play a long solo? That would change it from a beautiful melody to a monotone monotony.
Perhaps a church meeting is supposed to be like a bell choir, where everyone participates as the Holy Spirit directs, creating beautiful melodies. That seems to be the intention in 1 Corinthians 14:26: “When you come together, each one has a . . . “
to gather in Jesus’ name
means for believers to meet together
with the living, resurrected Jesus Christ;
denying self-interest, personal comfort, and human agendas;
and actually surrendering the meeting to Jesus’
direct and personal, leadership and control.
“For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.” –Jesus Christ
Do we go to church to be taught a religious lesson or to encounter and surrender to God’s presence? Church is a time to encounter the living God; not a time to get drowsy and nod.
A listening mind can learn lessons about God; but it takes a hungry heart to head wholeheartedly into His holy presence. People can be taught about God every week and yet, not be transformed by His presence. However, everybody I’ve ever seen transformed by God’s presence has always learned far more about God than they could ever be taught by human teaching.
Let’s be handbells and let God direct and play us!