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Surprisingly, one of the more difficult tasks of wedding planning was finding an appropriate song for my dance with my mom. I searched various genres, listened to dozens of titles, and even sought out suggestions from wedding websites. In spite of loving lots of the music, the words just weren’t right. With just days to spare, the perfect lyric came to mind and we called the DJ to request Jerry Herman’s “My Best Girl.”
As I reflect on that effort to find the perfect expression of a relationship in song, I cannot help but wonder if the church gives that much thought to its singing. Are we careful to select songs that exalt the name of the Lord and encourage his saints, or do we offer up empty phrases as we sing to one another and to the Lord? The issue is not one of style, but of substance. It is not as much how, but what we sing that matters. Whether our singing consists of the most contemporary hits led by a band or is comprised of classic hymns conducted acappella, we should give serious thought to the content of our singing for three reasons: (1) singing evidences the filling of the Spirit: (2) singing edifies the faith of others: and (3) singing expresses thanksgiving to God in all things.
Filling - Spirit
1. Singing evidences the filling of the Spirit.
When Paul and Silas found themselves in a Philippian jail on account of their ministry to an enslaved, demon-possessed girl, they passed the time with prayer and the singing of hymns to God. Their circumstances were not pleasant. Their prospects were not clear. But because of their relationship with God, they were able to transcend their temporary circumstances and worship the Lord.
Experience - Mind - Paul - Church
Surely this experience was in mind as Paul instructed the Ephesian church...
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