By Drew White, @MBCTysons Kid’s Quest Volunteer Recruiting Coordinator
Why does almost every church around the world have music as a part of its worship service? Other than the fact that there are countless Scriptures that tell believers in Jesus Christ to use music as a way to praise God, what reason do we have to make it such a central part of our corporate worship time? The answer might actually be found in something as simple as a definition. A simple question, with a simple answer, that has a profound impact on our lives as followers of Jesus. That question is, “What is singing?”
If we were to come up with a basic definition of singing, it might sound something like this: Singing is the transformation of basic spoken language into a melodic, rhythmic, harmonious, series of tones. But why do we sing at all? Why is it that music seems to be able to reach into every part of our life?When we are happy, there is a song for it. When we are sad, there is a song for it. Mad, there’s a song. In love, there’s a song. No matter what happens in our life, there is a song that most likely can relate to what we are experiencing. This is because when the thoughts and emotions we experience are put to word, and then that word is put to music, it has the capacity to reach into the very heart of what we are going through at that moment. That is why poems make us sigh with appreciative wonder, but songs make us jump to our feet, dance or even cry. This is why we sing. So what happens when we pair this phenomenon of singing with the power of God?
When the spoken Word of God, The Holy Bible, is opened, taught, studied, read aloud and meditated on, an incredible transformative power is unleashed. Lives are radically changed, brokenness is healed, identity is restored, hope is given, the majesty of God is put on display, souls are saved. When this happens, how are we to respond? What can we possibly do or say that can convey what just happened in our hearts? This is why we sing. It is one of the methods we have that can in some small way come close to expressing to God what He is doing within us, and it allows us to do this in a unified connected way with other believers of Jesus. It allows us to express the gravity, the levity, the joy, the peace, the relief, the thankfulness, the love and the appreciation we feel when we encounter the overwhelming grace and love of our risen King. This is why we sing. It is a natural response to our supernatural Savior. This is why we sing. Music, singing in particular, allows us to express the emotion behind what happens when we come face-to-face with the majesty of Jesus. It is our emotional conduit to the transforming power of God in our lives.At the end of the day, we sing because our God is worthy of our most authentic response, not only because of what He has done for us, but also because by His very nature He deserves our praise. Worship is a fundamental reaction between Creator and the created, and singing is one of the best ways we have to be able to express that. This is why we sing.