Everyone loves music. There are so many genres, it gives the listener a plethora to choose from. Even small children move and groove with the sound of songs. People wear headsets or earphones to hear their special tunes. We've got smart phones, ipods, ipads and tablets, radios, and cd's. Music stimulates us in movies, soothes us as we drive, wakes us in alarms and inspires with creativity. But more than that it's is a way that we can praise and worship God. Ps. 57:7 "My heart, O God, is steadfast, my heart is steadfast; I will sing and make music." Ps. 33:2-3 "Give thanks to the Lord with the lyre; sing praises to Him with the harp of ten strings. Sing to Him a new song; play skillfully [on the strings] with a loud joyful sound."
It is written throughout the Bible, noting people who played instruments in the house of God, or singers (praisers) that marched out before armies. (2 Chron. 20:21) We find in Genesis that Jubal was the father of all who played the harp and flute. It was written that Moses sang a song of praise after the Exodus of the Israelites. Even Deborah, the prophetess, sang a victory song of the defeat of Sisera. The boy David, played a harp that ministered peace to King Saul. Paul and Silas sang a song in the deepest of prisons during captivity. It's written in Revelation of angels who sing continually in heaven. So we can see the all through the Word of God music is important.
In some churches, people think music is a time filler, standing or sitting to watch the musicians, never participating. Praise is an audible expression or action acknowledging gratefulness to God. We must engage in the doing of it. Ps. 71:8 "My mouth is filled with your praise and glory all day long." Ps. 109:30 "With my mouth I will give thanks abundantly to the Lord; And in the midst of many I will praise Him." Notice it's MY MOUTH that's participating. I WILL, is a decision WE make to be involved.
Praise becomes more than just singing songs. It works like a plow preparing the soil of our heart, making it soft and pliable to receive the Word and His instruction. We are saying to God, 'I lay down myself, my thoughts, my fears, and MY agenda, and place You first and foremost in my heart', releasing to You authority over my life.' Praise is a condition of the heart, exalting and magnifying Him not your problems.
It is suggested that people have become 'thrill' seekers, expecting church to bring all the bells, whistles, and fireworks that the world offers. And if the music isn't as electrifying, they lose interest and fade off into a lethargic trance. To experience the power of God in any service, thanksgiving and praise always proceed. This means we must be involved.
Let me just say the Bible says, we are to bless the Lord, O my soul and ALL that is within me! It also says, that He inhabits the praises of His people. When we decide that Jesus becomes the object of praise the church will change drastically. We will begin to see a true move of His Spirit, where He actually shows up and meets needs. This means you and I must 1) Not allow emotions to dictate whether or not we praise. (Praise and worship regardless of how you feel.) 2) Be constant in repentance and forgiveness. (Sin can keep you out of the presence of God) 3) Put down fear of what others will think. (Really, they shouldn't be watching you anyway!) And 4) Open your mouth and sing out, lift your hands. (God isn't going to make you His puppet.) YOU have to do it! Love must be verbalized to be complete. Declare the praises of Him, who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light! (1 Peter 2:9-10) Let's Praise the Lord!
Pastors Michael & Ginny Gulotta
Pro. 11:25 "The generous soul will be made rich, And he who waters will also be watered himself."