It's Even More About Substance
1) Central Passage(s):
- Joshua 1:7
- Luke 4:5-8
- Matthew 15:1-9
- John 4:21-24
- Deuteronomy 6:5
- Exodus 32
- Matthew 15:1-9
- 2 Chronicles 20:21
- 1 Corinthians 1:23
2) My Daily Praise:
Listen to a worship song right now.
Does it properly express who God is and what He has to say in His written Word?
Consider, meditating on the lyrics of a verse or chorus of this song all day.
3) * My Daily Surrender:
Is the music you listen to most often songs that feed your spirit? Are they biblically based? Do they encourage concepts that are foreign to the Bible? This is between you and God, but what songs should stay in your repertoire and which songs should go?
* Not a personal attack or indictment on anyone who so chooses to listen to music outside of the "worship" or "biblical" arena. But the bottom line is the stuff we meditate and feed our souls is the stuff that shapes who we are and has an impact on our effectiveness for the Kingdom. Allow God to direct you and lead you in the "substance" that you feed your heart, mind, and soul as well.
Today’s reflections supported what I’ve believed for a long time. I’m glad to have scripture and Dwayne Moore backing me up. ☺ Russ, thank you so much for clarifying the “daily surrender.” I’ve witnessed many a debate on the topic.
My husband is an example of laying down the secular music repertoire for the Lord. He had thousands of dollars worth of “secular” music, even impossible-to-find recordings of some famous bands. The Lord asked my husband one day whom the music is glorifying. My husband then decided out of personal conviction to trash his secular music, and fill his music collection with artists that glorify the Lord. His decision was a personal matter, and therefore he does not downplay other musicians who do not have the same conviction. Over the years, I’ve increasingly respected that decision for multiple reasons.
Lord, “Where You Go I Go” by Kim Walker is the cry of my heart! I want to do as your Spirit asks, and I want you to find me faithful to you and you alone. I also want my children to see your power at work within me so they will know you alone are God!
Chorus: “Where you go I go; What you say I say; What you pray I pray”
Lord, I’m thankful my husband and I chose to fill our musical library with songs that honor and glorify you! My struggle is with keeping up with the various styles in your church. To learn different styles, I know I must listen to them quite a bit in order to understand their methods. However, the more I listen to songs that do not glorify you even as simple as learning a style, there is a tendency that it will feed my soul at some point. I’ve tried this before, and I was sucked into this trap. So, how can I learn various styles without getting sucked into allowing it to infect my relationship with you?
Melanie Siewert, Christ's Servant
Another lesson firmly founded on the Word of God, just like our songs should be.
When I listen to our local contemporary Christian music radio station, I frequently hear songs that are in the top 50 or so that have questionable lyrics.
Sometimes, unscriptural concepts are sung, other songs are self-centered, rather than God-centered. Sadly, many of these songs are being sung in churches that are more concerned with using the latest songs than with being scriptural.
Thank you, Dwayne, for driving these truths home today. Most of us who are participating in this study are songwriters, and this lesson is a powerful reminder to us to write songs that are consistent with God's word.
My Daily Praise
My song for today was In Christ Alone by Gettys and Townsend.
All four verses of this contemporary hymn are built solidly on the death and resurrection of Christ, and the life-changing power that is given to us because of his sacrifice. It is one of a very few songs that brings me to tears, especially the third verse: ...And as He stands in victory, sin's curse has lost its grip on me...." What a wonderful thought to meditate on today!
My Daily Surrender
Thank you Lord, for impressing on me several years ago that I should be filling my mind with good, Christian music, and pay no attention to the world's offerings. Thank you for good radio stations, for a stack of good Christian CDs, and almost nothing but Christian music on my itunes.
I'm not boasting, because I have nothing to boast about. I'm just grateful that, with all the things I struggle with, my music choices are not part of the struggle.
I love that Dwayne makes this a topic of utmost importance. It really made an impact on me when he stated that (to paraphrase) we are not to just worship with passion and emotion, but also TRUTH. We can get so stirred up emotionally with music but if truth isn't there it can actually be detrimental. This lesson almost scares me...have to carefully double check lyrics, especially when leading!
A lot of the song writing challenges are from scripture, i.e. this month's John 1. I was thinking, just today, actually, about expanding my song writing lyrics to include (not replace!) story songs, or point of view songs. More metaphorical, poetic, personal lyrics. Probably NOT suitable for congregational singing, but speaking of His word, power and love nonetheless. It's great to be reminded of the difference between worship and praise songs and songs that are about Him.
"Rich or poor, God I want you more than anything that glitters in this world, be my all, my all consuming fire." That song popped into my head. "You, all I need is you..." I believe it's scriptural. Very simple, too. God doesn't need complexity, as long as it's in spirit and in truth!
I went through this transition a while ago. I think before I had kids, but definitely after...when the girls are in the car it's pretty much KLUV. It's a shame when I have it on a secular station for even a brief moment and up pops a commercial for a casino or a DJ thinking he's funny and making an off color joke (not even on the "edgy" station!) Anyway, I've realized, since I've been on the worship team, how much God songs feed the soul. Now, I can't listen to secular music for very long (although I still have some favorite secular bands I REALLY scrutinize lyrics) before turning it back to Christian. It really helps me have Him in the forefront of my mind.
All that hath life and breath, praise ye the Lord!
In His Name,
1. Central Passage
- Style is relevant/cultural; substance in unchanging. We need to be very critical of the words in the songs we sing. There are a couple very popular songs out there now that I will not do, just because I don't agree, or like, some of the lyrics. Most of the song is OK, but one line or two spoils the whole thing for me. Others have asked me why we're not doing that song, and I tell them.
The heart is the fountain of worship, and the songs express our love flowing from it. Nice imagery. We also need to focus our worship on God, as revealed in His Word. Our worship needs to be founded in Truth, not our own version of the truth. Our lives, as well, need to be filled with His Truth.
I loved how Dwayne pointed out that just like Christ's death on the cross may be offensive to some, so may our songs, and we shouldn't change them or not use them just for that reason.
2. My Daily Praise
- The first song that popped into my head, as is usually the case, is "I Love You, Lord" by Laurie Kline. It seems to be the song that occasionally just starts to flow from my thoughts, almost subconsciously. As I thought about the words, yes, it does fit the criteria, and is honoring to God. That's a good check as we approach new music.
3. My Daily Surrender
- I'll have to do that sometime - go through all my songs and run them against those questions. But, for now, as we do songs each week, I'll definitely put them to the test, and weed out the ones that should go.