Friday’s chapel was Praise and Worship with the presence of every single talented musical person at the school. But that’s not what I’m writing about. We sang a song that I have issues with. Not that I don’t like it or think it’s heretical or something like that. It just has “baggage”.
The song is “Heart of Worship” and I’ll probably break a thousand and one copyright laws by posting the lyrics here, so I won’t. But part of the chorus goes: “I’m coming back to the heart of worship/and it’s all about you/it’s all about you, Jesus…I’m sorry, Lord, for the thing I’ve made it/when it’s all about you/ it’s all about you, Jesus…”
Anyway…you get the general idea. It’s about how we shouldn’t be coming into worship expecting God to bless us, cuz worship is all about glorifying God. It was the theme song for our graduation service when I was in high school. Our entire high school youth group clambored up onto the steps of our church’s stage and sang along with the teen worship band, bland-faced with trembling hands holding bits of paper with the words on it. It was pathetic. The congregation enjoyed it though, since this was about the time the song was new, and the congregation appreciates most things the high school group collaborates on. It pissed me off.
As I was sitting at the black baby grand plunking along and breaking up chords when I could to fill in the fact that we didn’t know the song as well as we should, I was angry. I did not have the heart of worship. I saw the people standing up there and I was angry as all get out. I saw my friends who were involved in drugs singing about asking forgiveness for selfishness…when Friday/Saturday parties had left the crank stains on their fingers. I saw my peers singing about Jesus being King of their lives – who were so obsessed with themselves that they would rather shop online at Abercrombie for four hours at a time than spend an hour helping with a canned food drive. I saw my boyfriend. And I knew what we had been doing the night before…and we were singing about giving everything up to Jesus as worship. I knew I didn’t have anything to give up but sin, and I knew that the same was true for over half the people up there singing this song. There was a torrential downpouring of guilt, anger, and pride over the First Family piano that morning. Nobody deserved to be singing this song. But there was no way we would ever admit that. In our minds, it was better to just let everyone think we were doin alright…ploddin along in the spiritual rut. Because it’s all about what people think, right?
I’ll admit to you, that I continued through the day with that attitude. I continued through the summer with that attitude. I know that the majority, if not all, of us in that group of stumbling angels continued on with our sin until God brought various brick walls in our lives. Those brick walls being pregnancies, jail time, confrontation by pastors and parents, suicide. But that song means something else to me now, looking back at it.
It’s all about Jesus. The reason we’re singing is that He’s awesome. God is awesome. In spite of all that disgusting sin going on all around that little time slot of pretended spirituality, He loves us and saved us, and paid for all those sins. Even though we’re dirty, filthy, raunchy little boogers, He still did it…knowing that a lot of us would outright reject Him. That’s why I’ll still sing that song…and all the others, even if I know things aren’t right with me ‘n Him. First, as a reminder that I need to recognize I suck. Second, as a reminder that God still loves me even though I suck. Third, as a response to that love and the sacrifice made so that love could be consumated. I sing…in spite of.