Keep thy foot when thou goest to the house of God, and be more ready to hear, than to give the sacrifice of fools: for they consider not that they do evil.
After preaching for nearly four decades, I am always amazed how some come to church and get helped and encouraged from every sermon while others come and get nothing out of service but seem to endure the sermons. I have always mused as to why the Holy Spirit will do a work in the heart of one person, and the person next to them sits and nothing happens.
How is it that some come and get blessed and others never get a thing? The answer is that some come more ready to hear than those who come to go home. When you come to church more ready to hear than coming to go home is when God can do a work in your heart through the preaching of God’s Word. If you go to church to see what you can get out of it rather than what you can correct in others, you will get something out of church. There is no mistake about getting something from church when you attend. Hebrews 10:25 says, Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching. There is no mistake that some receive the exhortation that Hebrews talks about and others do not. The reason is that some prepare to hear and others do not. Let me give you some things you can do to be more ready to hear so you can get something out of every church service.
First, go to church to hear instead of going to church to pay your weekly spiritual penance. If all you do is go to church to feel spiritual for the week, you will get nothing from the services. You must prepare your heart and mind to get something from church when you go.
Second, ask God throughout the week to give the pastor the message that YOU need. Praying for God to guide the pastor to give you a truth you need will prepare your heart to be more ready to hear. When you have prayed like this all week, you will sit with anticipation waiting to see what God has for you from the sermons preached.
Third, ask God on the day of church to give you something from the services so you can help others. I am not saying that you need to pray for an hour, but a simple, sincere prayer to ask God to give you something from every lesson taught and every sermon preached will help you get something from God’s Word in each service.
Fourth, get involved in the soul winning ministries of your church. The Luke 6:38 principle will help you to get out of church something that will encourage you. When you give out all week trying to reach people for Christ, you will come to church empty and hungry for God’s Word to be preached.
Fifth, bring someone with you to church. You will be surprised how bringing people with you to church gets your heart involved in God’s Word. When you have a visitor with you, you will be involved yourself in the service instead of sitting watching the service. You always get more out of being involved than you ever will by sitting and watching.
Sixth, be ready to respond to the invitation. You should make it a point that you will go to the altar at the invitation; this keeps you hungry and more ready to hear what God will give from His Word that is preached.