Worship is displayed on the frontline of our faith. We are called to worship, whether we are musical or not. Music isn’t worship; it is an instrument, a mode of communicating, which enables us to engage and unite on an emotional level.
I’ve been around the church scene for a while now: I been involved in mega bands, ministry groups, countless seminars, leadership, support, accompanying, singing… But that doesn’t make me a worshipper; it just means I’m musically inclined…
Worship is deliberately choosing to live life in alignment with God’s Truth.
Whenever I choose to allow God’s Truth to affect the atmosphere around me and bring me into alignment with Truth, I am committing an act of worship.
How does this happen? Well, first God plants truth in me – often though my primary love language, music – and then, the Holy Spirit enables me to retrieve these truths so that I can declare them into any situation. The choice is mine and I prepare myself by being deliberate in what I listen too.
What is corporate worship?
When we come together as a body of believers and sing a bunch of songs, we call it corporate worship – but there’s more to it than singing songs.
When we sing together, we tend to be more vocal than we would be on our own. United by the framework of music, we declare truths to ourselves and to our circumstances regardless of how engaged we feel. We encourage one another and become united when we sing with purpose.
Truth encapsulated in song has the potential to make a stronger emotional connection with our spirit and, because of the nature of the connection; is readily accessible in a time of need.
God gives us opportunities to worship
– some more intense than others…
Earlier this year, my parents were visiting from Canada and I went through the harrowing ordeal of having my father take up residence in the Intensive Care Unit at North Shore Hospital. This was probably the most extreme challenge I have ever faced. So, what got me through?
All this happened during the month of January, when just about everybody in New Zealand goes on holiday – especially those serving in the church. God knew what was going to happen. He even prepared me by having me bring a message to our church family a few days before about how God’s timing is perfect and that at the moment we step out in faith, His provision is already to meet us (Joshua 3:15-16).
True to His word, the Lord made provision for me by ensuring that the right person was available to make my family her priority in serving Him. When I called, she was there; ready to do whatever was needed. She co-ordinated communications and prayer with a congregation connected through modern technology, provided us with a safe refuge close on hand to ICU, words of wisdom, love, laughs, hugs and nourishment – both physically and spiritually.
What I needed for breakthrough was corporate worship.
Interestingly, every time I tried to have a time of worship… something blocked it. You’d think that a couple of musos could pull out a song anytime, anywhere… but no. Added to this, the church calendar was filled with ‘family picnic’ and ‘on holiday’ for the next two weeks!
Week three; there I was, crying out to God and soaking in His Presence as the music permeated my being. I was broken and in need of His touch that could only come through the support of being with others who were praising God and calling out on my behalf of me and my family.
How did my mum handle it? Strengthened by the prayers of believers and encouraged by the peace that passes all understanding, she contacted her congregation back home and requested that they sing a particular hymn and did likewise with the congregation supporting her here. She was connected… though the words of a hymn offered up on both sides of the planet.
Dad didn’t survive. But in that month, God gave me, and my son, the opportunity to share the Gospel in a much more meaningful way than ever before. The Lord also allowed me to experience worship with greater understanding.
How else can God plant truth into my life?
God created us with five physical senses to live in a multi-dimensional world. There is no end to his creativity. He can use anything to engage us in conversation imbued with Truth and to impart insight.
Music is a mechanism used to communicate with God and with each other about Him. A friend of mine goes bush to spend time with God, enjoying His creation displayed through nature. My mother loves to read and study the Word…
How do we resource the frontline?
Be there for one another, encourage and build each other up. Speak into each one another’s lives and sometimes (very often, actually) just listen.
It is important to prepare ourselves with skills and tools that stimulate us, give sustenance and direction. So stay tuned! Come back often and pass on that which might equip or inspire one another. Likewise, enter into the discussion by posting a comment below and share how God strengthens you.
Gayann and her husband, Stephen, have provided web design and email communication support to NZCN since 2006. She has home schooled their two children for the past nine years, but was ‘made redundant’ at the start of 2013. Since then, she has taken a more active role with NZCN.