Saturday, January 7, 2017

Be Your Own Worship Leader

There was a beautiful season in my life a few years ago where I regularly led myself in worship. I read and enjoyed the Bible, and I would put together setlists of 3-8 songs that expressed my response to the glory of God as expressed in His word.

During this season, it also happened that I didn't have Internet at home. It's amazing what you can do when you aren't distracted (I also got quite good at newspaper crossword puzzles).

This week, I decided to be intentional about worship again. I definitely leave room for freedom and I don't feel like I have to follow the set exactly, but being purposeful and thoughtful about putting it together has done so much to draw my heart towards Jesus.

After a whirlwind two years of intense Bible reading (every book, 20 times in a row), I've been taking things very very slowly. I'm currently meandering my way through the Psalms and it certainly is tuning my heart to sing God's praise.

Every morning, I set aside time between my 6am yoga class (or Bible study if it's Thursday), and the start of my work day to read a chapter or two of the Bible. I consider what it says about who I am and what it says about who God is and I let that inspire my songs of praise.

I like to physically set out the songs in an order - even if I have them memorized, I put the names down on post it notes or write it out on a page. I almost always start with a typical call to worship song: Come Thou Fount, Enter His Gates, Be Thou My Vision or O Lord, You're Beautiful. From there, it depends on the day. I gravitate towards hymns, but I've also been rediscovering some Beloit InterVarsity classics. In any event, even if I only have 10 minutes to grab my guitar, it makes all the difference in my ability to practice the presence of God throughout my day.