Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Story about God part 2

If you haven't done so already, please read part one before you read this post. Kyle posted as well and made some very good points. Click HERE to read his post. The following is the comment I left there...

I 100% agree that the story songs can, and are, uplifting and respectful by nature. There's nothing wrong about talking about how awesome our God is; I would even go as far to say it builds up the community of the church body. But I have to disagree that talking about someones accomplishments to another person or with a lot of people, is a conversation with that first person.
Imagine a noteworthy person sitting on a couch with you and me, and we sit and talk about how all the cool things they've done, how important they are, even how much we owe that person for their actions. We never say one word to that person, we only talk about him. See where I'm going with this? Would that conversation make any sense, or would it even be worth listening to for that person? That's just about all we do when we sing to each other about God's wonders and don't say thanks or give praise directly to him.

Please hear me everyone, this is a new thing for me. I never thought (which is embarrassing to say out loud) about what songs I was singing b/c they were about God and about His wonders. How could they be less than adequate? But the question I raise is, who are we singing to? Each other or God?

Today I was reading a forum where a thread was discussing types of worship, instruments, etc. While this isn't the same issue, a couple things really struck me. One comment: Formal worship is when we empty ourselves of everyday things and focus exclusively on God, in a single act of worship as a corporate body, to worship as the bride of Christ. Where we give God our whole hearts, and minister to Him. Wow! What a thought? But no where do I see that having a conversation (in song) between ourselves is giving all of ourselves to Him. If i wanted to give all of myself to Ell, I wouldn't just tell everyone else how awesome she is, I'd tell and show her. Even though it would make her feel good to hear me bragging about her, she'd get a lot more from me expressing those feelings to her directly.

If I can be so bold to ask for comments/responses, I really want to know what some of you think. Specifically: Rob, Kim, Andrew, and Steve. All of you have been involved with worship in a "visual leader" aspect, and I really want to know what you think.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Over the past few years as Rich and I have played music, even choruses when we play out, I have taken more and more notice to words. Pretty much, I have to know them if I am playing piano at the same time and singing. I don't care for a lot of the "older" praise songs anymore. When I fill in to lead the praise and worship, I pick songs that, to me, truly invite the Holy Spirit and songs that are truly praising the Lord, with specific words...I think there was such a change in music that writers are maybe finally beginning to learn how to write choruses correctly.


4:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've been thinking this one over, Sam. I'll reply again soon...

12:04 AM  
Blogger kimw said...

I've been thinking about it, too, Sam. I want to make sure I get my thoughts in order to give the topic the respect it deserves. I'll comment soon, as well. I do have some opinions on it :)

9:05 AM  
Blogger Kimmy said...

I happen to love both the old hymns and the modern worship. There is something beautiful about the way the old hymns were written and I see no reason why they cannot be sung to God in adoration and praise.

I like the modern worship too, a lot actually. My biggest problem with it however, is it's tendency to be too repetitive. Sometimes it feels like you're singing the same line over and over for twenty minutes. Also, some churches tend to pick a few worship songs they like and play them pretty much every week, and that tends to get tired and sometimes makes me end up dreading a song I used to love. We wouldn't want to hear the same sermon preached every week, would we?

9:46 AM  
Blogger Sweet Peripety said...

I blogged a bit more about this :-)

8:34 AM  
Blogger Dave said...

I wanted to get in on this discussion - I posted this over at Kyle's blog...

I heard a worship leader (who was a teacher, prophetic guy, too) say "the church should sing its vision". Probably what you would expect coming from a "prophetic guy" but I agree with him. I think one of the things we should do when we gather corporately is declare the vision we have as a church body. I think one of the ways we do this is through music because it is remembered. Songs have always been a way to teach things. I also think we should tell the story to ourselves and our children. I think we should remember the story we find ourselves in (do that many people even think about this -- that we are key players/figures in a story God is writing - we have a major leading roles - Jesus didn't just die for us so we could go to heaven - he redeemed us for a life and not just in heaven!!!)

I don't the music portion of the "service" is just a vertical thing. I don't think singing is only way we worship - so if it's not why should "talking" be the only way we learn or teach?

Rather than vertical or horizointal issue - I think the issue is being truthful in what we sing. I hate triteness in music and worship and I think some of the criticism that singing meaningless or repetitive choruses over and over is completely justified. I think we have to REALLY watch what we are REALLY teaching, declaring, or doing with our music as well as our sermon words.

3:12 PM  
Blogger drifter said...

I am looking forward to mulling this over a bit, but my initial reaction is this. Worship in the ave. church is 20 minuets per week. that is (aprox.) 1/504th of your week. A week that should be spent in communion with God. How much can it really matter exactly what the three songs are about.

Is it any more important than your choice to worship God on the way to work by talking to him or singing praises in your car.

9:40 PM  
Blogger Andrew said...

I have athought on this...let me gather it

9:11 PM  

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