Worship Rant (Guest Blogger–Jim Bullard)

May 4, 2010 by cloften  
Filed under Family and Parenting

I figured once the worship controversy got going, we might as well keep it going.  Jim Bullard is the Worship Pastor for the Chapel Venue at Fellowship Bible Church in LR.  He is a great guy with a love for God and for people to be true worshipppers.  Here are his thoughts.  (BTW, worship rant was the title of the post he sent me.  Actually his had an exclamation point.)

Recently, I have heard positive and negative comments about our worship at the church that I serve as worship pastor and it has driven me to ask some questions to compare my own thoughts and perceptions of worship to those found in the scriptures.  Jesus encounters the Samaritan woman at the well in John 4 and tells her that the Father seeks those who will worship Him “in spirit and in truth”.  No style is suggested and music isn’t even mentioned.


When Jesus appears to the two on the road to Emmaus right after His resurrection, then sits down for a meal with them and opens the Scriptures…their question expresses worship in a very tangible way…they asked “Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?”


When was the last time our hearts burned within us for God in worship or our eyes opened to see Him for Who He truly is?  When was the last time we truly worshipped God in spirit and truth?  Or, have the drums and electric guitar been too loud…or did the use of hymns and pipe organ prevent us from really getting anything out of worship.  Why is it that many of us have become connoisseurs of worship rather than participants in it?  I love this quote from the movie “One Night with The King”…which is the story of Esther from the Bible.  She enters his presence and gives him the necklace that her mother gave her as a child.


Esther when addressing King Xerxes when he is asking who she is and why she is giving him her necklace…


“I was taught that when you visit a King, rather than expect a gift, one should bring one to lie at his feet.  This is my most valuable possession in the world…it is my past…my present and my future and all of it is yours.”  


This is what we should be doing in worship…laying our most valuable possessions at His feet…fully expecting Him to change our hearts from what we want to what He wants.  Worship is a lifestyle that we live…not songs that we sing on Sunday.  Our corporate worship when we gather should reflect that lifestyle of worship rather than it being a service station where we fill up on God and all the “things” that He has for us.  It should be a corporate expression of lifestyles that are committed to His purposes and His processes in establishing His kingdom here rather than a “holy huddle” for members of a “club” (or church) to come and hear a motivational speech and music done in the style that we prefer.


When is a lifestyle of worship going to motivate us to meet the needs of our community rather than worrying about how many more people are going to the church down the street than our church?  When is a lifestyle of worship going to cause us to care more about our neighbors than we do about losing weight, getting a nicer car or learning how deal with stress in our lives?  When is a lifestyle of worship going to turn our hearts to our children and spouses and see that how we think about them speaks volumes about our worship?  When are we going to understand that music is a tool that we use to worship our Holy and Mighty God, not the very thing THAT we worship?


Many of us understand in our heads the answers to these questions…but our culture does not even ask them.  We are so preoccupied with the consumer mentality of offering our customers what they want and selling God and church life like a product for them to purchase.  The message of the gospel is to loose your life so you can gain it…that’s not culturally cool!  The message of the gospel is to consider others better than ourselves…that’s definitely not culturally cool?  The message of the gospel is to serve, expecting nothing in return…not a very popular message in our world!  Yet, the very definition of the word gospel is good news…living the good news, imparting good news…a lifestyle of worship can be the best news our world can hear.  Don’t try harder…don’t read another self-help book…pray for God to change your paradigm so that you can worship Him the way He wants to be worshipped.


One Response to “Worship Rant (Guest Blogger–Jim Bullard)”
  1. Ann P. says:

    Thanks for the illustration on proper focus and attitude in worship. I am not sure that was the point of the debate, but it seems for have become such. =)

    I, personally, appreciate any form of honest worship.

    I also cannot tolerate certain instruments at certain volumes, whatever the purpose they are being put to.

    I’ve been told “earplugs should solve your problem in loud worship settings”. Uh, no, they don’t. You cannot put earplugs around your entire body to shield from the vibrations that could bring down a building.

    Yes, worshiping God is the point. Seeking only the “best” performers for the worship bands and playing the music as loudly as possible is not.

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