One place we need to renew our sense of the horizontal in worship is when the Bible is being read and preached. You are not there merely listening to it by yourself. You are to hear God’s Word not only for its personal benefit, but you are also to listen as a fellow member of the body of Christ. Each person is to “hear what the Spirit says to the churches” (Rev. 2:7, emphasis added). Understanding this corporate dynamic affects how we listen to God’s Word.
When the minister calls you to worship on any given Lord’s Day, undoubtedly he seeks to draw your heart’s attention heavenward, as he should. He uses texts of Scripture to call you to praise the Lord and to shout joyfully to Him. As Paul told the church at Colossae, as those who “have been raised with Christ,” we are to “seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God” (Col. 3:1). In worship, we are to heed his admonition when he says, “Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth” (Col. 3:2). Our worship is “vertical” as we glorify and commune with our triune God.