Have you ever noticed that we rarely worship through singing outside of the Sunday gathering? In fact, we rarely sing anywhere in public anymore. Is that contributing to the lack of singing when it comes to worship? What happened to singing?
Please understand, what I’m asking us to think about in this post is not an indictment, but an observation. When you stop and think about it, most people don’t spend time singing as part of a lifestyle of worship. I’m not talking about church on Sundays. I know a vast majority of people sing there each week. I’m talking about the other 6 days of the week - between Sundays.
Time and time again we are presented with the challenge to spend time daily with God through reading His Word - individually and as families. We go to Bible studies, retreats, friend’s houses, small groups, and even church meetings where the reading of God’s Word and prayer are present. Those are great things, and my goal is never to diminish their importance. I ask though, where is the singing?
Why doesn’t the latest Bible study packet come with a songbook?
Where is the house party gathered around a piano singing worship songs?
Where is the family that sings together as part of their regular devotional time?
Where is the small group that sings songs of worship before they dive into their video series?
This all came to mind recently when I was helping a friend move a piano into her home. As a group of us are busting our butts to move this century old piano into a pickup truck (it was a beast!), she mentioned her desire to potentially have gatherings at her house where others could come, enjoy each others company, and sing together around the piano. This was a short and passing comment from her, but it really got me thinking and ultimately compelled me to write this blog post.
I thought to myself, “Who does that?… nobody… why not?… That sounds like fun!… maybe we’re all missing out on something.”
All throughout Scripture we see God’s people singing praise to Him, giving thanks and celebrating who He is and what He has done. There are so many verses in the Bible just like these from Psalm 33.
Psalm 33 (NLT)
1 Let the godly sing for joy to the Lord;
it is fitting for the pure to praise him.
2 Praise the Lord with melodies on the lyre;
make music for him on the ten-stringed harp.
3 Sing a new song of praise to him;
play skillfully on the harp, and sing with joy.
The Bible instructs us to sing to the Lord. Both the Old and New Testaments address music and strongly support its use in worship. There is such an anthology of songs found in the Old Testament - indicating the importance and value God places on creative musical expression.
Now, I know it may be a challenge at first. After all, singing in public is very uncomfortable for some people. At rehearsal the other night, one of our volunteers was noodling around on the B3 organ - leading us to break out into “Take Me Out To The Ballgame”. While being commonly sung at baseball games during the 7th inning stretch, it dawned on me - that’s one of the few times in our culture that people sing in public other than church. As we sing together, we need to realize that challenge and encourage people to step out of their comfort zone.
When it comes down to it, like I mentioned above, maybe we’re all missing out on something by not singing praises to God more often?
So whats holding you back? Get creative and find ways to worship God through song in your home or gatherings. Thanks to my sister-in-law, we discovered a simple way to incorporate singing at our mealtime prayer. Sydney loves to sing to God!
Let’s not miss out on the joy of singing to the Lord!
Colossians 3:16 (ESV)
Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.
You’ve probably never considered the book of Deuteronomy as one long funeral sermon, given by a man who knew he would die, to a people aware of his impending death. That’s exactly what we reflected on this last Sunday.
This last week we made our way through the book of Numbers. We learned how this book, filled with some pretty famous Sunday School type of stories, is also shot-through with the sad themes of unbelief and rebellion. It is shocking how a people who experienced so many displays of God’s faithfulness could still be ungrateful and unsatisfied with his provision and timing. Which ironically makes it so relevant for our study, for we all struggle with being satisfied with the circumstances of our lives.
It is the backdrop of Leviticus — with its thousands of priests and millions of sacrifices — that causes the beauty of the work of Jesus — the one priest, and the once for all sacrifice — to shine all the more brilliantly.
There are a number of major themes that weave their way through the whole story of the Bible: covenant, kingdom, and temple, just to name a few. This last Sunday we looked at the theme of God’s presence in each of the sections of the story that we have covered thus far (Genesis 1-11, Genesis 12-50, and Exodus 1-18), and then how this idea of God’s presence comes into a bit of a sharper focus in Exodus 19-40.
I think it is probably safe to say that there are two great peaks in the mountain range of God’s rescue and restoration of the earth. What the cross-resurrection event is to the New Testament, the exodus is to the Old Testament. In each case, the great redemptive salvation act (exodus/cross) produces the covenant community of God’s people (Israel/church) who are called to serve God and his universal mission.
Genesis 12-50: I Will Bless You
It is hard to look at any one text in the Bible and say that it is more important than any other text of the Bible. Since the whole Bible is inspired by the Holy Spirit as God’s Words, it is all equally valid and useful for growth in the grace and knowledge of our King, Jesus (cf. 2 Timothy 3:16; 2 Peter 3:18). At the same time, there are those passages that are particularly vital and important to knowing what God is up to in his rescue and restoration plan for the world.
The Whole Story: Genesis One Through Eleven
This last Sunday, January 7th, we kicked off our new sermon series, The Whole Story. As Genesis is the first book of the Bible, we began there, by covering chapters one through eleven...