I don’t know if other worship leaders are like me in this, but I get really REALLY excited on Sunday mornings when I see God moving through the set… even before a single note is played. Our worship practice doesn’t start for another half hour, but I’m excited for the journey that we are about to embark on as a worship team and as a congregation! (Nerdy, maybe… but I feel no shame!)
I love the Psalms. And the reason I love them is because they are so… for lack of a better term, moody. From “Praise the Lord, my soul; all my inmost being, praise his holy name…” (Psalm 103:1) all the way to “Arise, LORD, in your anger; rise up against the rage of my enemies…” (Psalm 7:6), the psalms reflect the gamut of emotions that I could be feeling at any moment. And I like that. The psalmists were real people, real worshipers, with real emotions that weren’t always happy-go-lucky.
All that to say, my worship set is a little moody today… but in a good way. It explores all of those feelings that people might walk into a church with: joy, sorrow, love, despair and everything in between! We all have our “stuff” that we walk into church with and I believe that the church will be more effective if we start acknowledging our “stuff” instead of trying to ignore it. Sometimes, a song of lament has its place, because life is not all rainbows and sunshine. And that’s ok! But more importantly, God cares about our “stuff” and he wants us to lay our “stuff” at His feet and leave it there.
My favorite part of this morning’s worship set, comes from one of my favorite hymns and has been running through my mind all week long:
My sin O the bliss of this glorious tho’t/ My sin not in part but the whole/ Was nailed to the cross and I bear it no more/ Praise the Lord praise the Lord O my soul
If that doesn’t give you a reason to worship, then I don’t know what will!
…My church has been through one crazy year. But looking back, I can’t help but praise. I can’t. Good or bad, happy or sad, healthy or sick, whatever the situation, praise is what I do. Because God is always there. Even if it doesn’t seem like it. Take the words written on the wall of a Nazi concentration camp to heart:
I believe in the sun
Even when it is not shining
I believe in love
Even when I feel it not.
I believe in God
Even when He is silent.
So… go to church today, bring your “stuff”, and leave it there. See where God decides to take you in this new year. And praise him in the midst of it all.
And in case you were wondering… my worship set for the morning is:
Let Everything That Has Breath
Blessed Be Your Name
It Is Well With My Soul
At the Cross