As a pastor one of the concerns I have surrounds what songs we sing in church and why we sing those songs in our churches. Most of the things we say about the songs we sing are founded in style. The songs we like or dislike is most often an issue of personal style. The problem with this way of approaching the songs we sing is we make the wrong things the major things. The songs we sing in church and in kids church can to often be based around the style preferences of the Sr. Pastor or Worship Pastor. There is nothing wrong with style but if what we sing and why we sing doesn’t transcend our own personal sense of style we limit the very purpose singing songs in church is intended to have.
I would like to offer this disclaimer. I have written very few worship songs. I do however pastor at a local church. I have been in the same church for 18 years and have seen the results of people and movements who based their lives on preference over substance. Given that here are my 4 questions that every worship song needs to answer.
1. Is it God directed – This is not a preference thing for me. If the song you are sing is more about you than the God who made you it’s not worship. It’s something else but not worship. The songs we need sing need to be filled with wording about who God is and what he has done. Is there songs of lament and petition in the bible? Yes. Those songs are based on an understanding of that everything begins and ends with God. It’s about what he’s doing more than how I’m feeling.
The Journey toward knowing your calling. Are you called?
- Do you have a feeling of helplessness?
- Do you have a sense of willingness?
- Do you have a sense of significant-ness?
Jim Burns started writing phrases that he wrote when he realized that he wasn’t going to be around forever.
Life has pain – You choose the pain of discipline or the pain of regret. 1 Tim. 4:7
Find life-giving replenishing relationships
- Do you have a mentor?
- Peer Relationships?
- Are you mentoring someone?
Find margin – You have to leave room for God moments.
You need to take time to refresh, recreate, play and have a great attitude as a family.
For families and marriages you have to play together.
Invest in your staff.
Untended fires become a pile of ashes. – Self leadership is massively important.
Brady Boyd – God is our peace.
You can’t be out 3 nights a week or work more than 50 hours a week. Most of our problems in our church and in our churches is we are moving to fast for to long.
Marriages fail because they stopped having unhurried conversations. We have to be friends.
Mothers and fathers, brothers and sisters sons and daughters. – We all need three levels of relationships all those relationships take time.
We all stay busy
1. If we stay busy we feel important
2. If we slow we’ll have to be honest with what is really happening in our lives. You want God’s you have to have God’s presence in our lives.
15 But now even more the report about him went abroad, and great crowds gathered to hear him and to be healed of their infirmities. 16 But he would withdraw to desolate places and prayed.
Albert Tate – God is enough
Jonah – God was enough but not really – Jonah stopped and listened and moved but failed to trust – God was something but not enough.
God said go. So he went but not to where he was called to go.
Jonah saying me overboard is not about saving anyone it was about Jonah controlling things. He was saying I would rather die than do what God wanted him to do.
When people leave we freak out because our identity is tied to their presence.
Jonah gave up on God but God never gave up on Jonah. Jonah tried to end things on his terms but God said I’m sovereign.
Chapter 2 in Jonah is about how rude God is because he has a grace that interrupts us. He sovereignly over-rights our story.
Michelle Anthony – Spiritually parenting families
Our role becomes not to do ministry programs for families but to do redemptive ministry to with, and through families.
6 dysfunctional parenting styles
1. double minded
2. I can’t say no
4. micro managing
We have to pursue Christ we get abundant life. When we go after the abundant life we get dysfunction.
Abundant life is a great byproduct but a horrible pursuit.
We have to be disciple makers. Programs don’t fix this.
renew your mind – we need to get people in the Word of God.
Take an honest look at your past – If everything is fun and rah rah you miss opportunities to deal with pain redemptively.
Allow ourselves to mourn –
Walk in step towards the new life that God has called us to. – We need to celebrate steps not perfection.
Spiritually healthy parent –