Friday, February 8, 2019

Make Some Noise!! …Or Don’t.

 (submitted by Kerry Patton)
Praise the Lord! Praise God in his sanctuary; praise him in his mighty heavens! Praise him for his mighty deeds; praise him according to his excellent greatness! Praise him with trumpet sound; praise him with lute and harp! Praise him with tambourine and dance; praise him with strings and pipe! Praise him with sounding cymbals; praise him with loud clashing cymbals!  Psalm 150:1-6 Standing in Silence
Recently, I was worshipping in church.  Or was I?  I think I was… You see, I was standing in church with the rest of our congregation as our worship team lead us in a praise song and I wasn’t singing.  Not for any reason, I was just sort of soaking in the experience of the room.  Sometimes I do that…I’ll just worship quietly and bathe in the presence of the Holy Spirit’s work among us.  Perhaps this was my own expression of Zephaniah 1:7 which instructs us: 
“Be silent in the presence of the Almighty LORD, because the day of the LORD is near.  The LORD has prepared a sacrifice.  He has invited his special guests.” GOD’S WORD translation
Other times though, I’ve caught myself standing and not worshipping – not out of reverence, but because my heart wasn’t right.  Whether I was nursing a wound, or battling pride, perhaps I didn’t feel like worshipping.  Whatever the reason, my tongue was stilled from giving God the praise and adoration he is worthy of, and this is a problem.  On one such occasion, I realized what was occurring and put a quick end to it.  I started singing because I was not going to allow the adversary to steal my voice of praise!
Bang the Drum!Only a few minutes ago, I was writing a completely different document…a prayer guide of sorts for our church when my eyes happened upon Psalm 150:1-6, which I had inserted in a section on Adoration. What captured my attention in that moment was fully half of those six verses were encouraging the reader to make noiseunto the Lord!!  I paraphrase the words here: “Go ahead…blow the trumpet unto the Lord!  Praise him with your stringed instruments and shake the tambourine while dancing for him! Play the cymbals for the Lord God…no, it’s okay…use the loud crashing ones too!”  
Now, don’t let me lose you… This isn’t about ‘rocking the house’ or making noise for noise sake.  This isn’t a petition for turning up the volume on the speaker system.  On the contrary, LOUD!! not the point.  I’m quite confident the Lord wants us all to be able to hear each other when church is over.  No, this is about worshipping Almighty God.  Worship is the point.  Adoration is the point.  Giving God that which he is due…is the point!  
In my mind, I suddenly had a picture of David as a shepherd boy dancing and strumming a harp to the Lord in an open field with all his heart.  I felt suddenly compelled to dash home, grab one of my instruments and give an impromptu concert to God in the back yard. Okay, I didn’t go, but I wanted to…  
Is it Either/Or?So, which is it? Is worship quiet reverence before the God of the Universe?  Or, is worship blowing the trumpet and crashing cymbals?  Is worship standing silently and agreeing with the praises of those around us, or is it singing God’s praises at the top of our own lungs? Is worship somewhere in between? What is worship?
The answer is “Yes.”  The simple conclusion is that worship should always be about God, not us.  Whether we play an instrument or not, can sing or not, are reverent in silence or shouting out loud, it is about worshipping the Lord our God.  Why?  Because he is worthy of it!
PrayerAlmighty God inspire us to worship you today.  No matter how we do it, move us to sing your praises, to worship you…to adore you.  Fill our hearts, minds, and mouths with words to express how much we love you.  Come, and inhabit our praises!  In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.

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