Worship In Waiting Rooms

Fluorescent lights. A little girl screaming while her parents tell the receptionist they think her leg is broken. A woman with a bloodied face holding back tears while speaking with a police officer. Names being called and codes being read over speakers.

The emergency room at its finest.

On a very odd night this past week, I spent a few hours trying to keep myself busy and calm, ignoring the overly sympathetic stare of an older lady a few seats away from me. After a while spent people watching, drumming my fingers nervously on the chair next to me, and staring out the window, I remembered that I had thrown my Bible into my backpack before running out the door.




Do you ever pick up the Word of God and feel relief wash over you? Even if you can’t completely focus over the half-hushed voices and constant beeping, just opening it is like breaking into a sunlit clearing after desperately trying to make your way through a dark forest. God’s grace and kindness in providing His written Word is absolutely stunning.

Even though I attempted my normal study, the Psalms beckoned my heart. I don’t think this was on accident, because as I flipped open the most poetic and worshipful book in the Bible, I turned to Psalm 16-one of my long term favorites.

“Keep me safe, my God, for in you I take refuge,” writes David. “I will praise the Lord, who counsels me; even at night my heart instructs me. I keep my eyes always on the Lord. With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken.” (emphasis added)

HE is a refuge. I will not be shaken.

David continues,

“Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices; my body also will rest secure, because you will not abandon me…You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.”

Reading these words, I was struck with just how SECURE we are in Christ. We have a refuge that won’t be shaken, we won’t be abandoned, and we will be filled with joy. If our foundation is Jesus, our position is immovable.

That’s crucial, because you can only truly worship from that foundation. Worship is scary; it’s saying that God is good and great and His promises are true, NO MATTER our circumstances, location, or emotion. It’s surrender, and only truly secure people can surrender.

It is this great security that allows us to worship in the most unlikely places, even hospital waiting rooms. After all, what shall we fear if our Anchor is secure? Even if life is chaotic, worship is still to be found.

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