Deuteronomy 16:27-29Splendor and majesty are before him; strength and joy in his dwelling place. Ascribe to the LORD, O families of nations, ascribe to the LORD glory and strength, ascribe to the LORD the glory due his name. Bring an offering and come before him; worship the LORD in the splendor of his holiness.
The company was fun, and a blessing. We pulled out guitars and djembes and even maracas and enjoyed music. My friend and I learned some music on the guitar and my kids were (kind of) taught about counting out a beat to keep on their hand drums. The smile on my daughter's face was brighter than a spotlight and my son was in his milieu. And then I had the insight that God calls us to worship Him with instruments and to dance before Him not only for His joy, but also for ours. When my children were actively engaging in worship and creative expression last night, I am certain the heart of the Father was filled even more than my own (which was a LOT!). But it was just as obvious that their little hearts were finding delight, as well.
At the end of the night I got frustrated because things didn't go as smoothly as I would have desired. And I tried very hard not to ruin the evening, although my mood had shifted. And I had the insight that God has given women a tremendous responsibility and influence within their homes. Not for the first time I noticed that people within my home respond to my nonverbal cues and that I often set the emotional climate for everyone around me when I'm at home. When I go to someone else's home, that woman does the same in her domain.
Lord, thank you for a precious night! Thank you, Father, for showing me just what a beautiful occasion simply sitting down at the table as a family is. Thank you for revealing to me how perfectly joyful worship is for those who worship you and for setting a standard of worship in our home. And thank you for disciplining me, for showing me how my heart needs to be so focused on you that emotion is peripheral and praise is my focus so that I can be a light and a joy to those around me, using my influence to point them to You about all else.