Choir Practice

March 12, 2007 — 2 Comments

Worship is an amazing thing. I read a quote this morning from Michael Coleman, president of Integrity where he said that “there is one thing we do on earth that we will continue to do in Heaven. That is to praise and worship God. That is why we view life on earth, for those who love Jesus, as choir practice for Heaven.” He goes on to say that if we believe worship music is the most important category in music today, it’s quite an understatement. “There is no more important activity of the human heart than to praise and worship God. This is the reason we exist. This is our purpose.” That rang so true for me personally. In the past few weeks, I’ve just picked up my guitar and begun to sing in my room – not for practice anymore, but for a private time of worship to God. It’s so incredible.

Recently, I received Chris Tomlin’s book on worship on CD, and had the opportunity to listen to it. His stories sounded so similar to my story, and I’m sure they are close to the stories many other young worship leaders. Many of us don’t really know what we’re doing up on that stage, except singing worship songs, and making sure we sing them right, and making sure the guitar is in tune and sounding good…and hoping everyone is singing along. That’s not right. It starts with my heart, my passion for worship, and my preparation for that night of worship. I need to know what I’m doing up on that stage, both from a theological standpoint and from a technical standpoint. Many times we just choose songs that are good, haven’t been over sung, then jump up on stage, practice them, then lead worship that night.

I tend to forget prayer, sharing stories, reading God’s Word, understanding the songs, and just simply being a leader. Many of us do that when we’re not a worship leader – we don’t think about what we’re saying, why we’re saying it, or what it means when we leave. I want to be the leader who understands that worship may start on that church stage, but doesn’t ever stop. It leaves with us as we walk out the door.

A few other things that struck me from both Chris’ book and my own thoughts on the topic of worship was silence. I never thought about the discipline of silence. Yet when I had my own private time of worship, I realized that we need to just stop, be still, and just think about what we’re singing and really understand what we’re doing. The silence brings it home – we’re worshipping the creator of the universe. That’s not something we do without thinking, without prior thought, or without a sense of awe. It should leave us speechless as we think about how glorious this opportunity is. It will leave us awestruck as we understand have incredible this time can and should be. If only we could all remember that, we might be different worshippers.

Yet it is still choir practice, and practice is not always perfect. We must continue to run the race with perseverance until we reach that place where we will worship Him forever.

Tim Sweetman

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Tim Sweetman is a young writer, blogger, and student who lives near our nation’s capital, Washington D.C. He has been much more widely known by his “code-name,” Agent Tim. This name also served as the name of his popular blog, which received over 750,000 visits between 2005 to 2007. In 2005, he quickly rose to become a leading teenage spokesperson and cultural critic within the booming blogosphere, taking on issues such as MySpace, alcohol, homeschooling, pride, racism, tolerance, and other topics relating to our culture today. His blog has come to the attention of people such as Albert Mohler, C.J. Mahaney, Alex and Brett Harris, and La Shawn Barber. Tim’s written work has appeared in Lifeway’s Living With Teenagers (February 2012), Lookout Magazine, FUSION Magazine, The Brink Online, The Old Schoolhouse Magazine, Virtue Magazine, Regenerate Our Culture Online Magazine, and on many other blogs and websites across the internet like Marry Well and the Lies Young Women Believe Blog. He has also been featured in WORLD Magazine, The Towers Magazine, and Maryland Newsline. He is scheduled to have an article appear in Veritas Magazine this December. Most recently, his work can be found on Focus on the Family’s Boundless Webzine. His personal interests include writing (surprise!) and sports, both watching and playing. He is a die-hard Washington Redskins fan.

2 responses to Choir Practice

  1. AMEN! It’s interesting that you should mention silence. There are SO many distractions in our everyday lives that we often miss meaningful worship…that powerful communion with God. One of these days, Tim, I’d encourage you to take a silence fast for one day…out of that day, 4 hours are totally devoted to focusing, concentration and just being genuine and intentional in your pursuit of God – be it study, reading, worship, prayer, etc. It’s an AWESOME discipline to cultivate and though I’ve only done it once so far, I can honestly say it’s an amazing experience. Keep up the chase, brother!

  2. Amen! Thanks for sharing this Tim, this is really encourageing.

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