Expressiveness in Worship
July 18, 2014 by Kyle Davis 0 comments
There is a reason that the first post in this three part series was on preparing our hearts for worship and the fact that every aspect of our lives during the week is a form of worshiping the Creator. We were created to worship God and we are emotional creatures, but just as in everything else we are called to do, we are to direct those around us to God’s glory and not our own. Our expressiveness in worship is no exception! If we are clapping our hands, singing, bowing before God, kneeling, lifting hands, shouting, playing instruments or dancing (Ps. 47:1; Eph. 5:19; Ps. 95:6; Ps. 134:2; Ps. 33:1;Rev. 15:2; Ps. 149:3; Ps. 22:23) so that others are impressed by our acts of worship then it is but a loud clanging cymbal that does not reflect the heart of a true worshiper. We worship God because we are no longer slaves to our sin. We are free in Christ and our identity is wrapped up in who He is. And the fact that He is now living in us means that our lives are a reflection of that! One of my favorite lines in a song is by Matt Redman: “It’s the overflow of a forgiven soul, and now we’ve seen You God. Our hearts cannot stay silent!” Our words should be confirmed by our actions. If we confess with our mouths that Jesus Christ is Lord then our bodies and our actions should confirm that. If I were to say to my wife that I love her and not confirm that with my actions then my words don’t really mean that much to her.
My heart is steadfast, O God! I will sing and make melody with all my being!
Awake, O harp and lyre! I will awake the dawn!
I will give thanks to you, O Lord, among the peoples;
I will sing praises to you among the nations.
For your steadfast love is great above the heavens;
your faithfulness reaches to the clouds. Pslam 108:1-4
Now before you start to think that all we are called to do is dance around and run a mile for Jesus, let’s also understand that there are times when we are so greatly affected by truth that all we can do is fall face down in reverence and awe of who God is and what He has done. There is no exact script that we are working off of and I believe that this is where a lot of us begin to elevate our expression in worship as an indicator of whether or not someone is a “true” Christian. Expressiveness in worship is not a primary issue in our Christian walk. Our corporate times of worship are not meant to be the same as a concert mosh pit or a Soul Train solo dance moment for us to shine in our talents and gifts. As in everything else we do, we must look at our hearts and the motivation we have in our expression.
But the LORD said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the LORD sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart.” 1 Samuel 16:7
Some of you may be saying that you don’t feel like lifting your hands or clapping because you have had a miserable week filled with all kinds of disappointments and doubts about God’s love for you. You would argue that it would be “forced” and “putting on a show that isn’t a proper reflection of what’s going on in your heart.” I have had this internal battle in my own heart many times and would argue that sometimes the act of worship is to stop listening to what my flesh is telling me about who I am and in faith lifting my hands to show my dependence on God, and focus on who I am in Him instead. If I only worshiped God when I felt like it, I would not be doing it very often. Just as David cried out to God over and over again in the Psalms, our circumstances must be measured and viewed through the lenses of redemption and grace and not condemnation and fear. Do you think that this would change your times of worship? Do you see in scripture the different expressions in worship and ever ask yourself why you have never done the same thing?
Comments for this post have been disabled