Worship is an amazing thing. I read a quote this morning from Michael Coleman, president of Integrity where he said that â€œthere is one thing we do on earth that we will continue to do in Heaven. That is to praise and worship God. That is why we view life on earth, for those who love Jesus, as choir practice for Heaven.â€ He goes on to say that if we believe worship music is the most important category in music today, itâ€™s quite an understatement. â€œThere is no more important activity of the human heart than to praise and worship God. This is the reason we exist. This is our purpose.â€ That rang so true for me personally. In the past few weeks, Iâ€™ve just picked up my guitar and begun to sing in my room â€“ not for practice anymore, but for a private time of worship to God. Itâ€™s so incredible.
Recently, I received Chris Tomlinâ€™s book on worship on CD, and had the opportunity to listen to it. His stories sounded so similar to my story, and Iâ€™m sure they are close to the stories many other young worship leaders. Many of us donâ€™t really know what weâ€™re doing up on that stage, except singing worship songs, and making sure we sing them right, and making sure the guitar is in tune and sounding goodâ€¦and hoping everyone is singing along. Thatâ€™s not right. It starts with my heart, my passion for worship, and my preparation for that night of worship. I need to know what Iâ€™m doing up on that stage, both from a theological standpoint and from a technical standpoint. Many times we just choose songs that are good, havenâ€™t been over sung, then jump up on stage, practice them, then lead worship that night.
I tend to forget prayer, sharing stories, reading Godâ€™s Word, understanding the songs, and just simply being a leader. Many of us do that when weâ€™re not a worship leader â€“ we donâ€™t think about what weâ€™re saying, why weâ€™re saying it, or what it means when we leave. I want to be the leader who understands that worship may start on that church stage, but doesnâ€™t ever stop. It leaves with us as we walk out the door.
A few other things that struck me from both Chrisâ€™ book and my own thoughts on the topic of worship was silence. I never thought about the discipline of silence. Yet when I had my own private time of worship, I realized that we need to just stop, be still, and just think about what weâ€™re singing and really understand what weâ€™re doing. The silence brings it home â€“ weâ€™re worshipping the creator of the universe. Thatâ€™s not something we do without thinking, without prior thought, or without a sense of awe. It should leave us speechless as we think about how glorious this opportunity is. It will leave us awestruck as we understand have incredible this time can and should be. If only we could all remember that, we might be different worshippers.
Yet it is still choir practice, and practice is not always perfect. We must continue to run the race with perseverance until we reach that place where we will worship Him forever.