Music holds power to bring us into community and create a place for all people. The congregation I serve is in the middle of the city. On a regular basis, we are joined in worship by neighbors who sometimes lack permanent housing and often deal with health challenges. Sometimes they are in need of food or other life essentials, but often they come to sing with other people in community. The music is balm for their weary souls, giving them respite from the many cares weighing on their minds and hearts.
Singing together in worship is not about talent. It’s not about perfect or even beautiful voices. It’s about coming together to worship God, to be transformed by the music into a place with space for everyone. Music, especially the music of beloved hymns and church music, is a gift from God that gives us a rest from our daily troubles. It focuses us on God’s love and grace in a way that helps when words alone falter.
This message is excerpted from “Finding the rhythm of love” by Jordan Miller-Stubbendick in the May 2018 Gather magazine. Today we commemorate Nicolaus Ludwig von Zinzendorf, renewer of the church, hymnwriter, 1760.
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