The church I was saved at played some awesome music before each service. It touched your heart and helped the congregation focus on being in touch with the Lord. Some of the old time hymns we sang brought tears to my eyes as well as to the eyes of many in the congregation.
Sometime in the early to mid 90’s things seem to be changing in many Christian Churches. Revivals were breaking out all over, younger people were getting more involved and the music sung was changing to fit the newer, younger crowds. Christian rock was used to describe some of it and later it was termed Charismatic Christian Music.
It appealed to the younger generation and, true, it seemed that many were turning to Christ and sharing the message among their friends, neighbors and families. The growth in many churches was astounding. People were soon dancing in the aisles, jumping up and down, waving their hands in the air and many were being blessed by the Holy Spirit in speaking in tongues. Many talked about being on fire for the Lord.
I remember sitting back and watching, from church to church, the changes that were taking place. Many of the “old” crowd strained themselves to keep up with the exuberance of the younger people, trying to bounce up and down and dance in the spirit until their faces turned red and the sweated profusely, finally having to sit down from pure exhaustion. Of course we know that wasn’t from the spirit, all the same they wanted to be included.
Maybe the changes were need to draw in new people, younger people, to keep the churches going, but I don’t think that the older ones needed to try and keep up. There was nothing wrong with the way they worshiped, but sadly I saw a few pastoral couples encouraging everyone to jump up and down or dance around and I saw many elderly couples leave the church because they just couldn’t keep up with the youngsters.
Church growth is great. Speaking in tongues, dancing in the spirit, waving in the air, jumping up and down is just fine if it is, in fact, of the spirit, David did it, in fact he encouraged it, but I have seen the pretenders. They were drawn in because it was like going to a concert. They didn’t want to be saved but “thank God” many of them were. They were there because of the atmosphere and acoustics.
People need to understand that when you come into the presence of the Lord, in many circumstances, it is a private affair. Following the crowd is not always a guarantee that you will be blessed as others have been. The Lord isn’t looking for acoustics, he’s looking for faith, and love, and obedience and worship.
I have always been the type of person who likes to stand off in the shadows. I don’t like to be noticed or pointed out. I’ve always wanted to serve in a servants area, behind the scenes, helping those who are more vocal and more up in front than I was.
Yes, I’ve worked with praise and worship teams, I’ve been on the stage in front of others, but most the time I was the person who set things up and helped others behind the scenes. It doesn’t mean I am less intent on my worship of faith to the lord.
I’ve spoken in tongues and I’ve prayed with groups, and I’ve been slain in the spirit. I haven’t danced in aisles or jumped up and down. I have lifted my hands to heaven and I have fallen to my knees in worship. It’s how the spirit has moved me.
If I don’t dance in aisle in a church, if I don’t scream and holler or jump up and down, it doesn’t mean I am any less a worshiper than others. If that way of worshiping works for others, it’s great, but it doesn’t mean that “we” others who worship in a more quiet way are less on fire for God, it simply means that our fire burns inside and we have a different, deep and private relationship with the Lord. Today I am thankful to still be “on fire” for the Lord.
“Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord” (Romans 12:11). “Do not put out the Spirit’s fire” (1 Thessalonians 5:19)
2 Samuel 6:14 And David danced before the LORD with all his might; and David was girded with a linen ephod.