I knew one of our church sign-changers was going to update our new outdoor sign right after worship last Sunday to reflect our special Rally Day worship schedule. So I took a careful look when I drove past it later in the day.

It had the information I'd expected - the 8:15 Service, the 10:00 Together @10 Service, and 11:00 Messy Church, with one small detail I hadn't expected - an exclamation point after the word "Worship" at the top of the sign.


It took me by surprise at first, but I liked it.  It matches the style of our Rally Day movie at the Tivoli, "Sing!" (about a group of animal characters bringing their skills, hopes, and growing edges to a music competition that becomes much more).

And the addition of that little exclamation point carries with it some of the meaning of worship as described in the Bible - a part of human life that is necessary, filled with the heights and depths of our human emotions, a stepping toward the presence of God who is always greater than we can imagine.

"Worship!" is the invitation on our outdoor church sign this week. And "worship!" is the invitation we will look at together in our Rally Day Sunday services. We'll be hearing Psalm 98, which uses a whole lot of exclamation points, to help us see a new kind of life that awaits us:

Sing a new song to the Lord!
Rejoice out loud!
...the Lord is coming to establish
Justice on the earth!

At the 10:00 service, we'll welcome back the Chancel and Chapel Choirs for fall season, pray over the fall Sunday School teachers, and encourage the children as they prepare for the start of a new Sunday School year. Get ready to "worship!"

Speaking of things that deserve an exclamation point, our congregation is responding to the devastating hurricane in Texas by "Giving!" We will share the full total on Sunday, but as of now gifts from individuals and families are up to $5,300 to enable the immediate and long-term disaster relief work of the United Methodist Committee on Relief.

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