Tag Archives: worship leaders

February 23; Prepared

Leviticus 22-23

As a Sunday School teacher, and a Bible teacher for our Good News Club, I need to be careful. What a privilege I have to be entrusted with sharing the Word of God. But as I read God’s instructions to Aaron, I am reminded that God demands I take care of sin in my own life before I stand before anyone I plan to teach. I’m reminded that my obedience must come before my service.

If I take a position of leadership, I need to be sure my offering is not tainted by sin, like an Old Testament Jew offering a deformed animal to God. I’m not talking about a monetary tithe. I’m talking about the offering of my time as I study God’s Word and prepare a lesson. I’m talking about the time I spend in prayer concerning the lesson. I’m talking about those Sunday mornings and Tuesday afternoons when I share what God has laid on my heart.

If you are a pastor, a teacher, a nursery worker, a song leader I would suggest you approach your responsibilities with the same intentionality as Aaron did. And, really, the same goes for any of us who dare to share the Gospel with people we come in contact with. May we search our hearts and confess sin as God reveals it. And may our ministries be blessed because we did it God’s way. May Jesus be glorified in each of us.

2 Samuel 4-6; What Does Worship Look Like?

Some have said 6:12ff is a blueprint for worship; that David, dancing and praising God with abandon, offering sacrifices, freeing himself from his robe, is the picture of true worship. It certainly is a happy picture of worship, a joyful occasion celebrating God’s Presence. Are we missing something if our church services are not like that?

If you’ve read many of my posts, you know I am not a fan of what is referred to as contemporary worship styles. And I am adamantly against church services with an agenda to entertain church-goers. But I am not discounting this picture of worship here in 2 Samuel.

First, David has reason to rejoice. The Presence of God represented by the ark, is coming home! I don’t know about you, but God’s Presence in my life makes me want to rejoice, too. When I confess sin and experience the rekindled relationship with God that had been broken because of sin, I want to sing His praises.

Hallelujah!

However, what we witness here in 2 Samuel is not a church service. It did not occur in the temple. Although it is a glorious picture of what worship can be, I do not believe it is a blueprint for what worship should be. There are many examples in Scripture where worship is expressed by falling flat on your face, laid out on the ground in humble submission and awe before our Holy God. I see examples of church services where Jesus taught with no mention of dancing or even of smiling.

When I hear a “worship leader” reprimand a congregation for not smiling or looking joyful as we sing, or for not bringing the same enthusiasm to worship as we bring to a football game,  I immediately know that person is looking horizontally, at people, and not focused on his own worship of God. Personally, I don’t want anyone leading me to look at people. Period.

I honestly don’t care what you look like when you worship. If my head is lifted toward heaven and tears of joy are falling from my eyes, I’m not going to judge you if your head is bowed and tears of conviction are falling from yours. If you raise your hands in worship, don’t judge me if I stare at the hymnal in my hand and let the words of the song break my heart in worship.

I don’t know what worshiping God looks like for you because I can’t see your heart. That’s where true worship occurs. Let’s not be bullied into looking like someone thinks your worship should look like. It’s not a performance. It’s not a contest.

Let your worship of God focus only on Him. Your expression of that will follow in a personal, God-directed and God-honoring way. You may end up singing at the top of your voice with hands raised and heart soaring. Or you may bow your head in humility as you worship your Holy Father in the quietness of your heart.

The only worship leader I’m interested in following is God Himself. The only worship  I want to offer Him is that which comes from my heart, no matter what that looks like to anyone else.