As we were singing in worship this past Sunday at our church, a noticed that my daughter Anna was sitting down and looking very defeated. I honestly don’t remember the specific song we were singing at the time, but she was not feeling it. It just didn’t seem like the promises and praises it was extoling God for were true, at least not for her.
Have you ever felt that way? Sometimes I get the feeling that the songs seem to be for people who have it all together. Do you know what I mean? There is nothing wrong with praising God for healing, saving, restoring, and freeing. He does! And it is important to do so. But it is also important to incorporate praise and worship as it comes from the heart that realizes it is still broken, that longs for healing yet to come, that is still very much at the mercy of its enemies, and that sings from the midst of chains that still hold it down.
After all, the Christian life is one of both/and, of now and not yet. One needs only to skim the book of Psalms, Ecclesiastes, Job, Lamentations, or Habakkuk to realize this is true. We don’t always keep our eyes on Jesus. We don’t always trust Him. We don’t always live like every day with Jesus is better than the day before. We don’t always keep the faith. It is one thing to say that we should do all those things. It is another to sing that we do, when we know that we don’t. Worship is best (in my opinion) when it comes from the heart that is real, that is honest, that longs for what it has tasted but does not yet fully have. Many of the worship songs I appreciate most are the ones that come from that place.