We Sing Hymns from the Hymnals
Sigh. I took this pic of a church marquee today. I cropped out the name of the church, as I have no desire to embarass them. The church is in SW Missouri, but not around Ozark.
I am sure the people of this church love Jesus and mean well. But they need to understand (accurate or not) this is what people like me hear when we read this sign:
1) Our church is self-righteous. We do church the correct way. We are holier than these "liberal" churches that sing praise choruses and/or use screens.
2) Our church is insecure. The world around us is changing. Rather than undergoing the somewhat scary/uncertain process of adapting, we will retreat even further into the church bubble, and criticize those churches that don't follow us.
3) Our church worships tradition. The most important thing is not genuine worship from the heart, but that you're doing it the "right way" on the outside.
Now, may I humbly suggest a few things to my fellow believers who agree with the sentiment of this sign?...
1) The Bible teaches us to utilize diversity in worship music (Eph 5:19). One could make the case that if a church only utilizes one style of worship music from one particular era, that it's being disobedient.
2) Putting lyrics on screens frees our eyes and bodies from being "chained" to a book. God meant for us to express worship with our entire being. (Scary for Baptists, I know.) To understand what I'm talking about, how does it feel when you sing a hymn that you know the words by heart, and you're able to set the hymn book down and just worship? Feels great, even liberating, right? Screens allow this on every song.
3) For new churches, or those churches who need to replace hymnals, you can purchase a projection CD with every song in the book on it for about $200 and a projector for $500. Or, you can buy 300 hymnals at $15/piece. Which is better stewardship? You do the math.
Just some things to think about. Take it in love.