Monday, March 5, 2012

A Joyful Noise

A Devotional Mosaic

(if you are getting this in your e-mail there is a video that goes along with this post. Please click the blue title to go back to the Mosaic Devotional to see the video)

Psalm 81:1
Sing aloud unto God our strength:  
make a joyful noise unto the God of Jacob.
I just got home from the Rock and Worship Road Show. There is a massive sea of 12,600 Christians worshiping God to really loud drums guitar and bass. It was a great evening and there was about 8 different bands and a variety of musical styles.

Rewind with me 30 years to a time when the church was fussing about groups like Mylon LeFever,  Rez Band and Petra. People were saying those rockers could not possibly be "real" Christians. Some went as far as to say they were "of the devil". Who did they think they were bringing drums, long hair and spandex into the church.  Now I have to admit Disciple was a bit screaming loud for my 50 year old ears tonight. I can't say that I was able pick out the words in most of what they sang. But I am all for what ever it takes to reach the next generation for Jesus. The next generation was there tonight in mass. They heard the good news that they don't have to clean them selves up to come to God. He accepts them just the way they are. That Jesus would stand in the place and took the judgement that they deserve. There was a hip hop rap group called LACRAY - all those kids where rapping along to some powerful words. Gotta say it was not my cup of tea musically but it was way cool. I guess my favorites were Tenth Avenue North and Mercy Me.

I guess one can't help but be inspired by that many people singing I Love You Lord, and I Can Only Imagine.  There was a time, even in the worship music side of things when singing chorus' was a big stretch for most of the church. That whole style of music has become pretty common place today. I can remember when we got a lot of grief if the mix of music in a service was not mostly hymns. Putting in a couple of choruses was really cutting edge. We've come a long way.  

So make a joyful noise - lest you think that the verse at the top of this post was an isolated example. I have found quite a bunch of others.

Psalm 95:1 O come, let us sing unto the LORD: let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation.

Psalm 95:2 Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms. 
Psalm 98:4 Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all the earth: make a loud noise, and rejoice, and sing praise. 
Psalm 98:6 With trumpets and sound of cornet make a joyful noise before the LORD, the King. 

Psalm 100:1 Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all ye lands.

I don't think God has a problem with loud.  If you take a look at worship during the time of king David loud and lots of instruments was the norm. 

2 Samuel 6:5
David and the whole house of Israel were celebrating with all their might before the LORD, with songs and with harps, lyres, tambourines, sistrums and cymbals.

1 Chronicles 15:16
David told the leaders of the Levites to appoint their brothers as singers to sing joyful songs, accompanied by musical instruments: lyres, harps and cymbals.

Anyway there was a lot of joyful songs and loud musical instruments in the Rock and Worship Road Show.  It was also pretty cool that they made the tickets only $10 because it made it possible to take the whole family.

I could not help but wonder - what might be happening in the heavenly realms over the city of Spokane as voices of that many people were raised in song to the Lord. Were there spiritual walls that tumbled down tonight. Will those same people who lifted their voices go out tomorrow and walk among the broken and feel compelled to make a difference for the kingdom. Will our city be impacted as a result of 12,600 christians gathered together.  Were we just entertained or will this evening somehow transform and change us and will those changes make a difference in our homes, job, schools and city.

How am I changed? I guess I am writing about it- I guess its easy to proclaim the praises of God in a room full of Christians who are also worshiping and praising God. How will we do in the face of the real world trial. In the face of pain and disappointment when things don't go the way we want them to go. One of the groups talked about how when you squeeze a tube of tooth paste what comes out?--- toothpaste. From squeezed oranges, you get orange juice. From Christians under pressure - what comes out? In the big arean full of people the obvious answer was Jesus -but is Jesus what really comes out of us when we are pressed?  

Dear Lord,
Help us to joyfully praise you not just in big concert settings but with all of our life. Let the words of our mouths please you. May out thoughts and prayers and actions reflect your love and your glory. 

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