Thursday, March 11

A Call to "Feel" Worship, to Engage Truth, to Really "Know" God

One of the greatest weaknesses among true Christians is their seeming inability, or perhaps unwillingness to "hear the music" within our expressions of Christianity (Church, devotions, Bible study, etc.). What do I mean? I mean that it is one thing to be present when worship is going on, quite another to worship. Example? I shared with our Wednesday Bible Study last night that this hit me while listening to a Beethoven Piano Trio, in this case, the famous number 7, "Archduke." As Vladimir Ashkenazy's fingers were running effortlessly and beautifully up and down the keyboard, I wondered, "How many would see him and marvel (perhaps) at his technical ability, but fail to "hear" and enjoy the beauty in this wonderful piece?" That is so sad, I think. Now, you don't need to love classical music to understand my point, though you may be the lesser for it! ;)

Christianity, however, is not a choice to the believer, but enjoying it--apparently--IS! The following quotation from Dietrich Bonhoeffer accentuates this problem from a different though related perspective:
To understand reality is not the same as to know about outward events. It is to perceive the essential nature of things. The best-informed man is not necessarily the wisest. Indeed there is a danger that precisely in the multiplicity of his knowledge he will lose sight of what is essential. But on the other hand, knowledge of an apparently trivial detail quite often makes it possible to see into the depth of things. And so the wise man will seek to acquire the best possible knowledge about events, but always without becoming dependent upon this knowledge. To recognize the significant in the factual is wisdom. ("Ethics As Formation," Ethics)
Do you see what I mean? We have massive amounts of knowledge at our fingertips, but sorting through it and making "heads or tails" of it is another matter entirely. Better to read less, to see less IF by doing so we learn and apply those truths wisely. 

I see this as a huge issue in our day of information overload. Seek to marry "inspiration" to information. "Feel" the music, if you will. Enjoy God in worship. Please let's not get hung up on forms and styles and music selections, as important as they may be, and in the process miss Jesus when He walks by--IF HE CAN--given our dullness to his real presence!

(Above--an old picture of Ashkenazy and his son. He's getting into it!)

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