So I'll stand... if everyone else does...

The popular stance on worshiping God with song is that we should sing the songs for an audience of one. The ideal is that our hearts are so focused on God that we’re almost completely oblivious to what is happening around us. We are so caught up in praising God for his love that we can’t help but sing along to the music and shake whatever moneymaker he may or may not have blessed us with. :)

But, when we’re completely honest, that’s rarely the case - myself included. It’s nearly impossible to close our eyes, throw our hands in the air to God, and completely forget about the six complete strangers in close proximity. Granted, some of us are incredibly shameless with our worship (and my hat’s off to you), but for most of us, it’s a struggle. It’s as if we’re more concerned about someone around us having an awkward impression or thought of us than we are with telling our creator that we’re grateful for him. Sound silly? Well, it should. It is!

But, have you noticed that seeing the people around you engaged deeply and honestly in worship seems to relieve the fear you have of cutting loose and praising Jesus? Sure, it’s easy enough to just say, “Yea, it’s easier for you to not look like a fool if everyone around you is doing it too!” And that’s a fair point if all you’re concerned with is what everyone around you thinks.

I believe there’s more to it - there has to be. If our own ability to worship hinges on the behavior of those around us, I hate to say it, but we’re going to leave worship services very empty, very often. I don’t aim to make any conclusive point here, but more to just think out loud and provoke some thought or good discussion.

Is it possible that there’s something unseen that happens when someone fully engages in worship? Does it affect the people nearby?

Personally, I’d say yes with 100% certainty. If there’s one thing that will happen consistently, it’s that when I leave a service feeling as though I experienced God in a more powerful way than I had in a long time, a handful of other people will approach me and say the same thing. I believe there’s a synergism that comes when even one person is fully engaged in worship around other people.

It’s difficult to explain. Some people are comfortable with just referring to this concept as the Holy Spirit’s presence, but some want to explore it more and explain what happens. Both are ok!

So, what do the rest of you think? I’m curious to hear people’s thoughts on praising God with song and what things are happening between our reaching hands and beating hearts.

"For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them."


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