Why Music in the Worship Service

February 15, 2009

in Sing With Me

Set for February 15, 2009:

Revive Us Again
Lord I Lift Up My Voice
We Want to See Jesus Lifted High
Ancient Words
Thy Word Is a Lamp Unto My Feet
Shine, Jesus Shine
‘Tis So Sweet to Trust In Jesus’

It’s a set all about God’s Word and its ability to change lives, to give hope, to renew us. I asked each member of the team to bring a favorite verse from Psalm 119 to read on Sunday during the set. For myself, I chose verse 59: “I considered my ways, and turned my feet to Thy testimonies.” The cool thing about this verse is that in my Bible it had a reference to Mark 14:72, when Peter hears the rooster crow for the third time and remembers Jesus’ words. “And he began to weep.” It is the power of the Word to change his heart, bring him to remembrance and repentance for his denial of His Lord and Savior, and in tears to come back to his Best Friend. That’s what I want to convey in this set.

In our devotion time, we’ve been reflecting on this topic for the month of February: Why do we have music in our church services? What is it about music that draws us close to God? After reading a couple of articles about this from Worship Leader magazine, this week I decided to share a personal story. In the 90’s when I was homeschooling my daughter, we were involved with a homeschool choir. For seven years I was the administrator. Moms and dads could also sing in it if they desired, and of course, I did. By the end of that time, we had over 200 kids singing from ages 5-18. We sang in 5 parts: 1st and 2nd soprano, alto, tenor and bass. I personally learned so much about voice, and harmony. We had two very gifted directors, both homeschool moms, but with degrees in music, one even from Juliard. As administrator, a large part of my job was to encourage these homeschool families. I put out a monthly newsletter and wrote articles about music and homeshooling. What would be the impact of these parents’ devotion and dedication to their children and their desire to impart spiritual values? What would come from particpating in this choir which was formed to honor and glorify Christ and to teach excellence in singing? We moved from California to Oregon in late 1998. I lost contact with most of these families and their wonderful children. Last year, due to the wonders of the internet and Facebook, I was reunited with them. I can’t even express the joy I felt to see what outstanding young adults these kids had become. Homeschooling and their relationships with each other and with Christ through singing His praises had resulted in strong faith and character. To my memory came one of the last things I had done with my team of moms who helped me with the many tasks of running the choir. Over the summer I had given them the words to Psalm 90:12-17 on index cards. I had encouraged them to memorize the words because I felt they were particularly applicable to these homeschool families. The last verse says: “Let the favor of the Lord our God be upon us; and do confirm for us the work of our hands; yes, confirm for us the work of our hands.” And there is the power of the Word. God did confirm for me the work of our hands through a modern marvel.

As I shared with my team, there is something unique and special about the privilege of being part of a worship team or a choir. Maybe its because you up there together singing your heart out about the Lord, your feelings for Him exposed, making you vulnerable and your love transparent. The relationships with each other and with God are close and personal forever.

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