Work of the Holy Spirit

In the conversational argument around liturgy, I often hear the more charismatic/evangelical side stress a concern to be more “open to the movement of the Holy Spirit” throughout the church service. A more scripted service is constraining to those who anticipate new movements, new words, new inklings from God to arise in the midst of worship. The liturgical camp seeks to lean upon and learn from that which God has revealed and worked out with our brothers and sisters before us, and that to which the Holy Spirit guides us in careful and prayerful planning.

One group trusts that their whims during worship are inspired, the other goes to great efforts to subdue their whims to that which is practiced and studied. One group longs to be lost to the movement of God, outside of themselves in the moment, while the other seeks to be consciously reshaped in practicing habits of worship. Both deeply trust the work of the Holy Spirit in guiding the church to worship God in spirit and truth. Both long to worship in a manner shaped by scripture. Both long to be shaped by their worship, more so into the image of Christ their lord. Yet, hermeneutic leads them to such differing practices, the one often does not recognize the other as worship.