Summary: Do we know that God sings, and discover the implications for us when God sang.
WHEN GOD SANG
“The LORD your God is with you,
he is mighty to save.
He will take great delight in you,
he will quiet you with his love,
he will rejoice over you with singing." Zeph.3:17 (NIV)
One guy told this story - Stopped for a routine seatbelt check, my wife and I were asked by the officer if we had our belts on. Then he shone his flashlight into the backseat and asked our six-year-old son Riley, “can you put your hands up, buddy?” As we continued our way, my wife noticed Riley was upset. “What’s wrong?” she asked him. “I thought he was going to SHOOT ME!” (Readers’ Digest, Feb.2005, p.71)
I seems that’s how some think when it comes to worship and praise of God. They think if God shows up, He is going to shoot them or something worse. When and if God shows up, God’s gonna be like a policeman citing all the offenses they have committed. They will be left unglued, totally blown away with shame, disgust. It seems some people get upset at church, or feel like they have to put on a show looking so dead serious, just to see who is more dead serious or spiritual. Ever seen people get really uptight or upset, like 6 year old Riley, especially when told to put their hands up to worship or sing or read the words of God. But go with them to a see something like U2 concert, or Canucks game (why am I bringing up NHL hockey?) or boxing day shopping, they would be cheering and clapping and standing up with no complaints, having a good old time. Is there something wrong with this picture?
Let me ask do you think God wants a funeral or a celebration when you show up for worship? As you think about it, let us review what an ancient book of worship instruction says,
But let all who take refuge in you be glad; let them ever sing for joy. Spread your protection over them, that those who love your name may rejoice in you. Psalm 5:11
You have made [ Or You will make ] known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand. Ps.16:11
Sing to him a new song; play skillfully, and shout for joy. Ps.33:3
Shout with joy to God, all the earth! Ps.66:1
Sing for joy to God our strength; shout aloud to the God of Jacob! Ps.81:1
Come, let us sing for joy to the LORD ; let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation Ps.95:1
Now that’s just a small sample… if I were to take the time to read to you all the instructions to clap, shout, sing, play music instruments, this message would take several hours to complete. Just to add balance let’s see the instruction in the New Test.
The New Testament also agrees with the Old. It also spells out clearly that it is God’s will for us, who are believers, to come joyfully in celebration…
Read with me 1 Thess.5:16-18:
16Be joyful always; 17pray continually; 18give thanks in all circumstances, for this is GOD’S WILL FOR YOU in Christ Jesus.
Does the Bible tell us that God wants to shoot us, or to have sad droopy faces or to spread joylessness as if there is no good news about Christ? Many folks want to find God’s will for their lives… Well, hello??? Here it is… written and spelt out for us.
I am not speaking here. These here are not my words. The Bible says in Philippians 4:4-7
4Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Once again we receive instruction to get the celebration of God to be a complete package in our lives.
How do you do this celebration especially given the fact that life has a way to really get us down, bored, and just routine blahs?
A. Change the picture
Song that has touched my heart written by Benny Hester…
Almighty God, the great I am
Immovable rock, omnipotent, powerful, awesome Lord
Victorious warrior, commanding King of Kings
Mighty conqueror, and the only time
the only time I ever saw Him run
Was when He ran to me, He took me in His arms
Held my head to His chest, said “My son’s come home again”
Lifted my face, wiped the tears from my eyes
With forgiveness in His voice He said,