A few weeks ago I was singing the Doerksen/Brown song Hallelujah (Your love makes me sing). I’ve sung it millions of times (OK, perhaps only thousands), but this time one line really tripped me up.
-The song is about the awesome, amazing love of God. Check
-It’s strong, gentle, mysterious, good and solid. Check
-It hits us in many different times and circumstances of life. Check
-And as I realize how incredible this love is, when I begin to respond to it, when I recognize the magnitude of this love, what is the most appropriate, most stupendous thing I can do in response?
The most incredible demonstration of affirmation and compassion has exploded into my life, and the best I can do is get together with some other like-minded people and sing.
Does that sound rather feeble to you?
And perhaps less than appropriate given the power and purpose of love?
Sure, I have always loved music. There are wonderful examples of great music. And music is a great tool for communicating ideas.
But is a song the best way to respond to something as powerful as the love of God?
Here are some of my thoughts:
• In recent years the church has been inundated with ‘worship’ music. Worship (among other things) means worthship. But is talking/singing about something wonderful the best way to demonstrate that it is wonderful? Is the best form of worship our voices? Or is it our actions?
• We refer to God as Creator. Is talking the best way to honor the Creator? Or maybe being creative ourselves, and maybe by valuing the creation around us?
• We speak of God as gracious. Do we sing about grace? Or extend that grace to others?
• I believe the best way to honor the worth-ship of someone or something is to reflect that which we value back out into our world. We have experienced the love of God. We honor and desire to declare the worth of that love. What better way to demonstrate how incredible that love is than to reflect that same love to someone else?
• The love of God isn’t just to make us feel good, just to give us a theme for a song. It is to change the world, to bring the Kingdom.
• What do you think warms God’s heart more? Us gathering in our clubs, singing our pep rally songs, or us showing the value we place on His love by passing it along to someone else?
In Luke 6 Jesus teaches about trees being known by their fruit, and good men being known by the good treasure that comes out of their heart. Then he says; “Why do you call Me, 'Lord, Lord,' and do not do what I say?” (Luke 6:46)
As I thought about that verse, I wondered what Jesus would say about what we call worship. Are we just saying/singing nice things about him, or are we actually following his teaching?
When he tells us in Matthew 25 that we are to care for the least of these, are we putting our energy into doing that? Or are we spending our time, effort, talent, and finances singing nice songs in a nice sanctuary with some other nice people (not even aware of the least of these on our doorstep)?