2Chronicles 7:14 If My People, upon whom My name is called, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.
As a worship leader, there are many passages granting keys to more intimate personal worship. There are remarkably few that point us to what we will call revival worship. Our nation is in dire need of authentic culture shaping revival. To achieve this, we must be willing to do what God requires.
Notice the first word is “if.” The healing and revitalization of our nation is not guaranteed. We have a choice. I am convinced we are not waiting on God; He is waiting on those that call themselves by His name to step out of pride. To pray and seek the face of one greater than one’s self requires quite a bit of humility. These are key to revival worship.
A slow song is not a worship song simply because it is slow. An acoustic guitar played over a soothing string pad does not guarantee God’s presence. There must be a humble acknowledgement of His incomparable greatness and worth. We must acknowledge that He alone is God and worthy of our personal and corporate worship.
Seeking God’s face takes time and focus. If the worship leader is more concerned with lights and compressors than sincerity and passion for revival, they are a hireling and a great distraction from the church’s purpose. If the ministry is only for the entertainment and pacification of the people, revival is not a foreseeable end. One cannot pursue evil, sin, and God. Holiness must be sought if we truly want a move of God.
A packed building does not mean revival, but revival does pack buildings. Compromise will always short circuit revival. Nothing else satisfies a true revival hunger other than true revival. A watered down gospel may fill a stadium with people seeking fantasy but it will not give them the power to stand in the day of adversity. Paper umbrellas are always a bad idea.
I am praying for brothers and sisters willing to sing, play, preach, and serve God with the ferocious humility that will allow God to lead us in the paths of righteousness. Our goals, visions, and ministries must serve the cause of revival. Please send me songs, videos, paintings, sketches, and other expressions based around the theme of regional, national and, or, global revival that you would like me to post or send me links to your works. The fire must start in hearts and be spread to the next. Tag, it is your turn to pass the fire along.
1. Devoted or dedicated to a deity or to some religious purpose; consecrated.
2. entitled to veneration or religious respect by association with divinity or divine things; holy.
3. Pertaining to or connected with religion (opposed to secular or profane): sacred music; sacred books.
4. Reverently dedicated to some person, purpose, or object: a morning hour sacred to study.
5. Regarded with reverence: the sacred memory of a dead hero.
6. Secured against violation, infringement, etc., as by reverence or sense of right: sacred oaths; sacred rights.
7. Properly immune from violence, interference, etc., as a person or office.
(Definitions courtesy of dictionary.com)
Romans 12:1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.
Romans 12:2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
For most of history, there has been a distinction between the sacred and the secular. One was not required to read the lyric sheet to determine if the song was for the glory of God or man. The savior that died for all was afforded a grander musical expression of love than the dark-eyes barmaid that caught the composer’s eye. I am convinced that God’s desire to be special has not reduced or ebbed. It is man that deemed God will be content receiving whatever we give as worship. Being a friend of the one omnipotent, true and living God does not necessitate an irreverent approach to His presence.
I included the above definition to help us determine if we truly hold God as sacred. In an age where intimate fellowship with the Most High God is wonderfully being heralded throughout the church, we must not relinquish the reverence and honor that is the trademark of all that have ever encountered Jehovah God. God is still holy and must be treated as such.
The entertainment industry is never embarrassed by its constant plunge into the glorification of hedonism and sin. Why should we follow them on the path away from the word of God? We will never be trendier than the trend makers or more stylish than the style makers. When we, in pursuit of God’s presence of God, throw off the yokes of insecurity concerning our innate peculiarity the world will pattern itself after us. The church must not be held hostage by the desires of man. God’s house must be a place where He, and He alone, receives honor and glory.
What does this have to with music and worship? Everything! If more effort and weight are given to the whims of man, the music was for man. If the objective is exalting God for sake of coming closer to Him, one is worshipping. We cannot offer God a watered down version of what the world uses to satisfy is lust and craving and consider it an acceptable sacrifice. God is constantly releasing new sounds and textures through His people that are pure and undefiled. Though there are no hard rules as to what defines a sacred work in the modern era, play amazing grace and everyone knows it is for God.
The greatest works of music came when men and women gave God music to please Him. I pray we pursue sacredness over palatability to the carnal nature of man. God is ready to pour out more of His sounds, timbres, textures, harmonies, and rhythms. He is just waiting for us to stop dancing to the world’s drummer.