Let everything that breathes sing praises to the Lord! Psalm 150:6
Because your love is better than life, my lips will glorify you. I will praise you as long as I live, and in your name I will lift up my hands. Psalm 63:3-4
He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God.
Many will see and fear the Lord and put their trust in him. Psalm 40:3
Songs bring us to places. We hear a tune and instantly we're transported back to our childhood, high school years or an impactful event of the past. Songs bring us information. It's why we know that Jenny's phone number is 867-5309 and that the mode of transportation for that small-town girl who was living in a lonely world was a midnight train.
Songs also bring us to places where our hearts get exposed. When we're down in the dumps, some tunes pick us back up. When we're nervous or unsure of ourselves, we cling to lyrics that inspire us to reach new heights. When we find that special someone, a song defines that relationship. Anger, worry, love, laughter - all the emotions under the sun have a song describing them.
For many of us, music serves as an escape. There's a place inside each of us where the rats dwell and fear resides. It may be subtle. It may be obvious. Or, you might have just become an expert at concealing and containing it. When those thoughts and feelings rise to the surface, we turn the music up to drown out the noise.
Regardless of the volume of the song, those places don't go away. And because these places of insecurity, fear, and restlessness still reside, we can't be still; instead, we're anxious. Restlessness makes us wonder but in the wrong direction. We wonder what's wrong with me, what did I do, and we wonder if things can ever be different.
How does God tell us to respond to this madness? Quite simply, He tells us to learn a new song. God invites us to be still, wonder, and reflect on His love. Worship is a weapon that pushes the darkness back to help us see beyond our circumstances and the emotion of our current situation. Christ's love puts a new song in our hearts.
Throughout the book of Psalm, we witness the writers pour out their hearts to God. Amid their pain, worry, anger, and anxiety, worship springs up to refocus their eyes and refuel their hearts. Praise sometimes rises in spite of their circumstances.
We don't get filled with His love by working harder or trying to the best of our ability to earn it. We get filled by singing our lungs out. Singing shapes the way we view our circumstances as well as the God we love, serve, and follow. Our perspective of God shapes our praises of God. The opposite is true too. Our praises to God shape our perspective of God.
The way to be loved is to be still. We take in His love, so it takes over our hearts. Love doesn't politely invite fear to leave. Through singing a better song, love comes in full force to drive it out. Resting in His love does so much more. It enables us to not view stillness as a potentially scary proposition, but rather an invitation to align our hearts with what it has been searching for all along. Love always overflows in creative expression.
Singing roots us in what we believe, it reminds us of the truth, and over time it become our response. When we face storms, adversity and uncertainty in our lives, our reaction should be to worship our God in the middle of it all. Singing is not extra; it’s essential.
Where do you need to use worship as a weapon? What would worship be battling against in this situation?
God, allow a new song to arise in my heart. When I'm worried, let me worship. When I feel restless, let me rest. When I struggle, let me be still. Help me to trust in Your love and let this security guide my steps. In Your name, Jesus. Amen.