Tag: King Jesus

A Matter Of The Heart

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I’d like to share some thoughts regarding the ministry of the worship leader. Almost every Christian church has one, though they have varying titles. Some are called Song Leaders, while others could be referred to as Worship Pastors, Music and Arts Pastors, Psalmist, or maybe one I haven’t heard of. I’ll use the term “worship leader” though, for the purpose of this blog.

I’ve been a Christian for 37 years. I’ve been a worship leader for about 30 years. I’ve led songs for 37 years. What? Why the difference in years? Because leading songs and leading worship are two different things, the same way singing and worshiping are two different things.

Remember when King David brought the Ark of the Covenant to Jerusalem? It took him two tries before he was able to “secure” the Presence of God. The first attempt (read 2 Samuel 6) was very festive to begin with, but resulted in fatality. They attempted to carry the Presence of God using the latest vehicles, gadgets, most people in the choir, service scheduled to the minute second, everyone wearing the best robes Israel had ever seen, and the instruments were second to none. But even with all they had going for them, they didn’t follow God’s instructions. They didn’t find out what He wanted. They presumed to know, presumed to believe that God would “show up” just because they did. Wrong.

Dead wrong.

David was a man after God’s own heart, according to Acts 13:22. He desired to not only sing to the Lord, or about the Lord, but he desired to worship the Lord. To me, the difference between singing and worship is this: singing to or about God is simply using my physical and mental faculties to express something. Worship comes from my heart, the deepest part of my being. I may use my mind and thoughts to help express what my heart wants to say, but worship comes from the heart.

Remember that Jesus said, “out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks”? He also said, “God is Spirit. They who worship Him must worship in spirit and in truth.” Again, Paul wrote in Romans, “if you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord’, and believe in your heart God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.” In other words, a person cannot worship with only their mind and voice, just like one can’t become a Christian because they repeat the “sinners” prayer. It’s a matter of the heart.

Worship is a matter of the heart.

David took a little time and rethought the matter. Somehow it dawned on him that God must have some thought on the subject. David discovered he had been wrong. So he assembled the procession again. This time he would lead the worship procession in spirit and truth. His whole being, spirit, mind, and body, became involved in “leading worship”; making a place of honor for the Lord. The priests, the “worship team” if you will, accepted the responsibility for carrying the Ark of the Covenant. David was in front of the procession worshiping with all his might. Not everyone liked what David was doing, but God did. David led worship by worshiping.

Remember, worship is a matter of the heart.

I’ve listened to and seen a lot of different worship leaders over the last 37 years. God used several to show me and teach me how to worship and lead others in worship. I’m not saying I’ve learned it all, not by any means. I just know what I know. And, I’ve heard some say that leading worship has changed, and it’s totally different than it used to be. I disagree. Leading worship has not changed. Leading songs, has. Songs have changed, instruments have changed, all the outward stuff is different, more hi-tech, etc.

But worship is a matter of the heart.

It was that way when Abraham walked up the mountainside with Isaac to “go and worship”(Gen.22). It was a matter of the heart when David sat on the hillside, watching over his sheep, singing, “the Lord is my Light, and my Salvation…”

Worship has ALWAYS been a matter of the heart.

So, if you are going to be a worship leader, take a tip or two from David. HE worshiped as he led worship. You cannot drive people to worship. You can’t beat them into worship. Worship isn’t submission to the worship leader, it’s submission to GOD. You can’t pick just the right songs to get people to move a certain way, because worship can’t be coerced or manipulated.

As David did, you have to worship if you are going to lead worship. Even if the guitar is out of tune, the projector burns out, the microphone is crackling, you have to worship. Worship is a matter of the heart, not the sound system. If necessary, throw away the stuff so you can worship!

If you are the only one worshiping, great! Don’t stop and scold the congregation! Be kind of like the doorman in a fancy restaurant. Every time he opens the door for a customer, the fragrant aroma of the restaurant invades the parking lot. So, as a worship leader, worship; hold the door open and allow the fragrance of God to draw the whole congregation in.

When you minister out of your heart, a heart full of worship to your God, it will affect others. Because…

Worship is a matter of the heart.

Questions: are you a worship leader or team member? Do you ever get distracted with the business of leading worship? What do you do to refocus?

War Face

War Face“Do you have your ‘War Face’ on?”

I was at a prayer/discussion group yesterday morning. Someone made a statement, which I don’t think I heard correctly. What I DID hear, in my spirit, was “do you have your ‘war face’ on?”

Now mind you, I don’t get out as often as maybe I should, so I wasn’t really familiar with that phrase.

So I thought, why not ask God what He’s referring to.

After meditating on the phrase, asking the Lord to enlighten my mind and understanding, and searching the scriptures, I have somewhat of an idea.

“Do you have your ‘War Face’ on”?

The Lord was asking me, “Are you prepared for battle?” “Is your mind and heart ‘fixed’, ‘locked in’ on the mission?” “Are you prepared to prepare the way for others?”

He directed me to the scriptures listed below.

“Preparing” the way is to clear the pathway of things that hinder the work of God in a specific area. Primarily, spiritual things, forces, pressures, temptations, etc. “Remove” stumbling blocks, stones, things that trip us and others. “Lift up” the banner of the Lord’s Presence and victory before the people.

To do those things, prepare, remove, and lift up, one must be personally prepared, stumbling blocks removed from their own lives, and the banner of God stretched across their heart, signifying ownership!

The ‘War Face’ implies one’s focus, determination, passion, and dedication to the cause. It states, in no uncertain terms, “I will do what must be done for the King and His Kingdom!” I will love others, fight for others, confront the enemy, yield to God…for my King!

As you read the following scriptures, pay close attention to the description of the Gadites (whose faces were like the faces of lions). They had their ‘War Face’ on, and it wasn’t just to scare or intimidate the enemy. It was their way of saying, “we’re gonna fight until we win; and we win when every knee has bowed to King David.”

Kingdom warriors, your ‘War Face’ is your declaration that “you’re gonna fight until you win; and you win when every knee has bowed to King Jesus!”

Amen, so be it!

“The voice of one crying in the wilderness: “Prepare the way of the LORD; Make straight in the desert a highway for our God. Every valley shall be exalted and every mountain and hill brought low; the crooked places shall be made straight and the rough places smooth.” (Isaiah 40:3-4 NKJV)

“And one shall say, “Heap it up! Heap it up! Prepare the way, take the stumbling block out of the way of My people.”” (Isaiah 57:14 NKJV)

“Go through, go through the gates! Prepare the way for the people; build up, build up the highway! Take out the stones, lift up a banner for the peoples! Indeed the LORD has proclaimed to the end of the world: “Say to the daughter of Zion, ‘Surely your salvation is coming; behold, His reward is with Him, and His work before Him.'””(Isaiah 62:10 – 62:11 NKJV)

“From the Gadites there went over to David at the stronghold in the wilderness mighty and experienced warriors, expert with shield and spear, whose faces were like the faces of lions and who were swift as gazelles upon the mountains.” (1 Chronicles 12:8 ESV)

“These Gadites were officers of the army; the least was a match for a hundred men and the greatest for a thousand. These are the men who crossed the Jordan in the first month, when it was overflowing all its banks, and put to flight all those in the valleys, to the east and to the west.”(1 Chronicles 12:14-15 ESV)

“Dear friends, I warn you as “temporary residents and foreigners” to keep away from worldly desires that wage war against your very souls.” (1 Peter 2:11 NLT)

“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints, and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains, that I may declare it boldly, as I ought to speak.”(Ephesians 6:10-20 ESV)

Amen, so be it!

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