Without a Guitar?

Here’s some food for thought for you…. what would your church service be like without music?

Would you like it? Would you hate it? WOULD IT MATTER?

I was having a conversation recently with my Dad (a pastor) about the current model of church, how something obviously needs to change, how it’s far from the New Testament church blah blah blah (I’m sure many of you have heard that over and over and are sick of it etc). I bring it up solely because our conversation took kindof a fun turn that I wanted to share with you all.

I brought up the fact that I find it so funny that there are so many churches that CLING to having music for “worship” in their churches, which is especially befuddling in those churches that do not have anyone particularly musically talented. The result tends to be a particularly stressed church staff and/or volunteers… and lets be honest, sometimes a painful audio experience for the congregation.

And I always wonder why. Why do we cling so much to this model? It is my belief that church needs to be about the gifts that the people in your church have and giving them an opportunity to use them, NOT about desperately trying to fit a model.

My conversation with my Father ended up going a bit like this at the end:

“I mean, just think about it, if church is supposed to be meeting together with other believers, it’s kind of like hanging out with friends.  I mean, I know that I have had good times with friends who play guitar and they pull out the guitar and sometimes we could start singing, but it’s not like when I’m hanging out with friends and none of us a musical we are all upset that we aren’t singing & playing music”

{laughing} “Yeah, how many people go ‘But it’s just not hanging out if we don’t have a guitar, we NEED a guitar, maybe we should hire someone to hang out with us so we can have a guitar-player.”

Honestly, we found it way more amusing than it seems here in print but I cannot tell you the amount of times I have seen churches stress about their “worship” program when really they mean their music program. They scramble to have volunteers, they waive their leadership standards just so they can use someone with some musical talent, they make someone’s musical ability one of the main factors in whether they will hire them or not…. all because they think that it will make or break the “worship” that happens at their church.

Does that not seem weird to you? Why do we cling so much to a model that even if it would not naturally fit with the talents specific churches have we still expect the churches to have it?

Why do we not just meet as the people of God and let our ‘models’ flow out of the unique gifts present in that church body?

I’m not suggesting we should all go to church tomorrow and insist that we scrap the music program… I’m just saying maybe it would be a good thing if we started thinking more about what people’s natural gifts are. What can YOU offer the church? What can the person who sits two rows in front/behind of you contribute? Often times people feel like church has to look a certain way and they do not have anything that will help it become that perfect church. My suggestion is that maybe the more we focus on being ourselves, (the ourselves God designed us to be) and helping others be who God designed THEM to be (not you, big difference), our churches will become even more beautiful that we could imagine.

Thoughts?

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