Friday, October 23, 2009

Paul Baloche: Singing Our Theology

Churches that are on mission with God function out of deep intimacy with Him, otherwise their expressions beyond themselves become exhausting works that drain strength and create spiritual fatigue. Operating in the flesh to accomplish spiritual ends is a recipe for burn-out. One thing that restores our soul is authentic worship.

Paul Baloche speaks of leaning into God in worship. He writes worship music out of deep reflection in the Word of God and time spent with his antennae up for the Spirit’s prompting. For his new album Glorious released by Integrity Music, Baloche did a video testimonial that moved me when I viewed it. I encourage you to listen as this colleague in ministry discusses worship.

Singing in worship is not about producing emotional highs. I have been amazed at the numbers of people who equate the pursuit of a missional posture with a particular type of worship music.

Nothing could be further from the truth. I have experienced missional churches who sing praise and worship songs, others whose worship is characterized by southern Gospel, some experience only classical hymns and these are only an initial introduction to the forms of worship music in missional churches. The big issue is not the form, but the function. Through our music we sing our theology.

Worship music done well, whatever the “brand,” should celebrate the attributes of our great God, provide a platform through which we honor His virtues, and allow a mutual concert of voices bringing sacrifices of praise. In worship we sing our eternal Story, Psalms from the Old Covenant together with praise that generations prior to Christ could never have sung. We experience the mystery of Christ in us. That is part of our theology. God is not only with us, He is in us.

As you worship today personally, this weekend corporately, I hope that you can lose yourself in His presence. Join with brothers and sisters in whom He is also living; praise, express His greatness, sing His worth, surrender again to His reign in your life. Then live His mission, not out of obligation, but adoration. And by the way, should there be those among you in worship who do not yet know Him, be aware that their observation of your worship is a vivid validation of who He is.

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