Living on Prayer

23 10 2009

I listened to Francis Chan this morning (after spilling coffee on my pants).

If he hadn’t been swarmed by adoring fans, I would have asked him if my Pike’s Place Roast-stained jeans were ironically indicative of my materialistic mindset.

Instead, I just thought about prayer.  I don’t really pray enough, and I don’t really immerse myself in the Word enough.  I think those two things should go together in my life, and I think Lewis’s emphasis on nonverbal prayer is perfectly paired with the Word Himself.  Mr. Chan always makes me think a lot, and he is, to reiterate, what sparked my interest in the conversation I had with Alex the other day.

The only part that frustrated me is how distracted I always am by contemporary worship times.  I am wholly in favor of praising our God, but I’m seriously wondering if putting a bunch of people on a stage to lead repetitive ballads is the best way to do that.  Maybe it would be better if we mixed in more A cappella Psalms?  How about some group Scripture reading?

I just don’t like the idea of singing a set of widely-known (or recently-written by the song leader) praise songs as the sole method of “worship.”  It seems vainglorious to me, although not all the time.  Maybe this just means they are doing of a good production job for me to be distracted by the glamorous nature of it…?

We at the apartment were talking about how some famous “worship music artists” do concerts, and are paid for them.  I can understand that people need to make a living in their ministry, but I can’t help but think that St. Paul would be tearing his robes if he heard that a small church couldn’t afford to have _____ play worship at their church.  How screwed up is that?

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2 responses

25 10 2009
Cory J.

Agreed that times of sining praise songs needn’t be the “sole method of ‘worship.'”

Something I specifically appreciated at Hume Lake camp this summer (have also heard/discussed elsewhere) was that the time of singing was not defined as the only “worship” we did. It was always introduced as “now we’re going to worship through music,” which I took to imply, “…and we are also worshipping when we hear the Word, when we talk about it with friends later on the grass field, and heck, we can even be worshipping as we beat students with dodgeballs”

25 10 2009
Tiffin

That sounds like a good step to me. I think my main issue in when there is a specific two-part service that consists solely of “song time” and “sermon time.” I don’t want the only Scripture I hear to be what the pastor uses in his message, and I don’t want the only praising we do to be the times we can’t even hear ourselves sing because the cool-looking worship band is rocking so hard that we forget about everything else. It seems like it reduces our expression of worship to simple emotive gestures. That’s not to say that those gestures are not worthwhile or important, but I would like to hear more opportunities for the congregation as a whole to participate in the gathering.

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