It is interesting to note a growing number of churches deciding to take the Sunday after Christmas off from gathering together to worship God. It is strange because I thought the point of worship was to take time away from the busyness of life to worship God and anchor ourselves in His promises through Jesus Christ.
I am really not trying to be critical here. I get it. Christmas is so busy with a multitude of activities surrounding the holiday. In addition to our normal worship patterns, we add services for Christmas Eve, have choir concerts, Christmas plays and so much more. All of this added church activity is in the context of an increasing number of family, office, neighborhood, school and community happenings during this special season.
In trying to make an educated guess as to why things are trending where churches take off the Sunday after Christmas, I would have to say there maybe a wrong understanding of what it means to worship God. If a church’s worship primarily focuses on producing a product (the worship service) for people to consume, then there may not enough production value to warrant the energy in preparing for a service the Sunday after Christmas.
It is not uncommon for the Sunday worship service following Christmas to have an epic drop in attendance. The reason is many people are traveling and/or tired of the consumptive nature of the holidays. Perhaps there is an innate sense of being expended beyond capacity both for the producer and consumer.
This should not be so if worship is about both loving and being loved by God and each other through participation in praise, prayer and the ordinary means of grace of preaching and the Lord’s Table. Love is without limits. We need our daily bread. God’s table is waiting. Our brothers and sisters may need us to be present for encouragement. We need to feast on Christ and His promises. It doesn’t matter if the production crew needs a break. By all means take one. But for one Sunday we can turn off all the production and tech, can’t we? Isn’t it enough to read the Scripture, eat from the Table, pray and be with each other while marveling at the grace of God in Immanuel?