“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 heats to God.” (Colossians 3:16)
I am not musically inclined at all. I can’t sing, play an instrument, or even read music. But there is something about music that stirs my soul, especially in a worship setting, like nothing else.
I used to think of music in a church setting as a kind of add-on thing to the main thing. Something to warm people up and kill time waiting for latecomers to arrive before getting to the good stuff, and then something to wrap the service up. But overtime a shift occurred where I realized worship was an integral part of a Christian community coming together (I’m a slow learner!). The music isn’t for us as the recipient. God is the recipient…it is an act of worshiping God. We sing to Him. We lift our voices in unison – as a united people – in praise to God. It gets our soul in sync with Him in preparation to study His holy Word. And we end service in response to the study of the Word, again praising and thanking Him.
Think about it…some people love to read, some hate it. Some people love to write, some hate it. Some people like to speak in front of crowds, some hate it. But everyone loves music. Not necessarily the same kind of music, but everyone likes music. In God’s creativity and love of order, God created music. Melodies and rhythms with endless combinations to tell stories, remember God’s Word, praise God. And God sings over us (check out Zephaniah 3:17).
When I focus on the lyrics, so often I am moved to tears as I join in worship at church. And to glance over and see someone with their eyes closed, hands up, clearly moved by worship just gets me. A friend once told me she thought it was the holy spirit’s presence that brought her to tears. I like that thought. Our reaction to worship is a result of the spirit of God showing Himself and moving in and around us as we come together in joint worship. It is a beautiful thing to be in active worship to our God. Now when I am overcome by emotion in response to worship, it causes me to pause and thank God for revealing Himself to me in such a special, personal way. I feel like God is close and I can’t help but express gratitude to Him.
Through hymns and worship music, God’s Word is set to melodies that help teach us, heal our soul, remind us who He is, encourage us, and fill us with His goodness and wisdom. On a personal level, we get to intimately feel God near. Corporately we get to join others with one voice in united praise. And we do it all in the name of Jesus, with thankful hearts.
Praise God from whom all blessings flow.
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