Ritual is a doorway

Ritual is a doorway - Carmel New Church

Every now and again we need reminding from the Lord that the ceremonies, rituals and services in themselves are not the goal of religion. Rituals are not worship itself. It is important to be reminded that the rituals are a means to an end. They can be compared to a doorway which we can choose to use to move beyond the door into a new space, a new spiritual space.
The spiritual space beyond the door of ritual is one where we move more and more into a constant conversation with the Lord, where He is in our thoughts not just on a Sunday morning, or at the allotted time of morning or evening prayer, but rather our conversation with Him infills everything we engage in during the day. When in this space, there is conversation with the Lord while we do our chores at home, or while in our duties at work. There is a conversation with Him that continues while we engage in conversation and interaction with others in striving to build healthy relationships, and even when we are at play.
The Lord’s Prayer is a part of every ritual and ceremony in the New Church. In itself the words of the Lord’s Prayer are empty. We bring meaning to the words through our thoughts and ideas; it is what comes from our heart and mind that infills the words. The Lord ’s Prayer is a doorway, a means to an end. It is an opportunity the Lord gives us to enter into a space beyond the ritual of just saying the Lord’s Prayer, and move toward a more regular and intimate conversation with Him.
In our Summer Sermon Series, we will be using the 10 Commandments to help add more meaning to the words of the Lord’s Prayer, sharing spiritual principles and ideas that we can use to infill the words. In offering a different framework to use when engaging with the Lord, the hope is you will find ways to make the Lord’s Prayer practical in your life as you recite the Prayer to yourself.
The new Summer Series starts on June 27th and will run through to September. The focus of
the series will be the Lord’s Prayer & the 10 Commandments.

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