[vc_row fullwidth="false" attached="false" padding="0" visibility="" animation=""][vc_column border_color="" visibility="" width="1/1"][vc_column_text disable_pattern="true" align="left" margin_bottom="0"]I was 10 years old when I found my Dad's box of old 45 records. Jackpot. Nothing like a little rummaging through a few closets to find treasure. I was particularly excited about these old records because my Dad had just purchased a brand new, Hi-fi stereo from Sears, complete with huge speakers, a turn-table, and double (yes, double) cassette player. Big silver knobs that had a little weight to them when you turned them, this was the real deal. As we say in the south, "I was walking in high cotton." I found a 45 in that box called "Big Bad John" by Jimmy Dean. I carefully inserted the little plastic thingy that filled the hole to turn your 45 into a 33 - high tech. I must have played that record 35 times. It turns out that I wasn't the only one who enjoyed it. In 1961, the song won several awards and spent 5 weeks as the number one record. People played Jimmy Dean's record over and over. Now they just eat sausage with his name on it and wonder how Mr. Dean came up with such a magnificent sausage recipe.
It's 33 years later and I can still be hooked by a song. I am that guy who plays a song over and over. If I convince you to listen to said song, I will hold you captive until a certain moment. You know, that part, that moment? Wait for it. It's right here. Oh shoot, that's not it. Oh, here it is! You freeze time, close your eyes and make some sort of celebratory motion/dance move when you hear it.
Maybe I'm the only one, but I play an imaginary drum, guitar, or hold my mouth a certain way when the part comes. I'm not sure you will enjoy it as much as I do, but for me it's like watching the sun appear on the horizon. Magical.
When it comes to songs about Jesus, my "wait for it moment" is magnified a hundred-fold. I go to sleep with a song in my head. I wake up with the same song in my head. I put the song on repeat. It's not just music. It's the soundtrack for my heart and soul. This can go on for days.
I can be having the worst week, full of uncertainty, struggle, and junk, and then I hear it - a song straight from His heart to mine. Just like that, my stiff neck relaxes and I'm swept up into the greatness of Jesus.
Johan Sebastian Bach seemed to be on to something when he said this: "The aim and final end of all music should be none other than the glory of God and the refreshment of the soul."
At first glance, that's a very "churchy" thing to say - the glory of God. You can imagine someone who seems a bit disconnected answering a seminary question that way.
What's your music about? With pursed lips and snout pushed to the sky: "My music is for the glory of God."
But what if the answer was more like this: "When I sing, or write, or listen to music, it's almost as if a crack in the heavens has appeared; and the slightest glimpse of Jesus - his beauty, his goodness, his majesty - has spilled into my lap and I am overwhelmed, caught up and overcome with his glory."
I would want in on that. I would want to play that song over and over. It would be life to this weary soul.
Throughout the Bible, God has this type of experience on repeat. It's on David's heart in Psalm 40 as God gives him a new song in the midst of trouble. The Red Sea opens up at the command of God providing a path of rescue for millions of people and how do they respond? They sing. The Israelites go out to battle and who do they send to the front lines? The singers. That's all it took. God finished the battle right then. Worship in the temple? Singing. Rebuilding the wall and the foundations of the temple after returning from exile? Singing.
The New Testament also gives us multiple examples of singing and many of them occur when things aren't going so well. Just before going to the cross, Jesus shared a final meal with the disciples, then they sang together. In the middle of a prison with chains and stripes on their bodies, Paul and Silas (you guessed it) sang together. James exhorts us to deal with our suffering and our joys with prayer and singing. Ephesians asks us to talk to each other with songs.
Where is all this coming from? The answer comes in Zephaniah 3:17. God himself… is singing over you. It's not a quiet lullaby either. It's loud singing. He's the source, the composer, the instrument, the notes, the measures, the song and the symphony. It's Him. It's always been Him.
Who wouldn't want to hear that song?
Maybe we are… hearing. Maybe we are… singing. Could it be that when you choose to lift your pitchy voice in the shower and it's directed to the King, that you are joining the chorus of the ages?
Revelation, that crazy book that has stirred up wonky movies and books, also gives us something very easy to understand about the end. We will be singing. Not just any song. The song of the Lamb.
The best part? No one will tell anyone that the song isn't as good as the old songs, or that it's too loud, or quiet, or that they don't like it, etc.
The only thing you might hear?
"Sing it again!"[/vc_column_text][mk_icon_box2 icon_type="icon" icon_size="64" icon="mk-li-paper-plane" icon_color="#02b3ff" title="Follow Chad's Blog and never miss a post." title_size="24" title_weight="inherit" title_top_padding="10" title_bottom_padding="10" align="center"]