Ever since I began leading worship, I’ve always dreamed of doing it on a big stage. For me, it’s honestly not about the stage per say, but about leading with a big band with a hungry audience. When I was a teenager, I wanted to lead worship for our annual youth conference in B.C. Yeah, I wanted to be Darlene Zschech, from Hillsong Church in Australia. Not because of the fame, but because in my mind, she had exactly what I wanted. A killer band with and an audience that was desperate for more (that’s what the recordings sound like anyway!). Well, I never really made it to the “big time” as far as that’s concerned, but my husband and I do get to lead worship in a number of different, more intimate settings, and I’ve been really surprised by how sweet our moments in those settings can be.
There is definitely something to be said of the large corporate gathering, as well as a weekend retreat type of setting, but I have found such joy and authenticity in our smaller gatherings. It’s not as much about who is leading as it is about where the Holy Spirit is leading. It is beautiful and precious and I love those times.
Last year, we were preparing a set list for a group that we used to lead worship for and I noticed the name of someone I knew on one of our chord charts. He was listed as the writer, and following his name was a BIG name in the worship world. I was stunned. I don’t know him well, in fact he probably wouldn’t remember me, but even years ago when I met him, he had somewhat of a following, so I still puff up my chest and say, “Yeah, I know that guy.” 😉
The other day, I was listening to my worship playlist on Spotify and one of my favorite songs came on, one that I’ve been wanting to introduce where we lead worship. I decided to go ahead and get the chart ready for our next gathering, so I looked it up online and guess what? The guy that I know? He wrote that song too. So I googled him. Sought him out on Facebook … saw comments on his page from other well-known worship leaders that I love.
Then I began to wallow, just a little. There he is, living my dream. People know his name, not just in B.C. anymore, but across the globe. People around the world are singing his songs. I wonder what would have happened if …
I keep telling myself that I don’t want fame or fortune, and I really don’t. That’s not what it’s about for me. At all. What I do want is “a large crowd of witnesses”. I want to worship in a stadium full of people who are hungry for an out-pouring of the spirit, with a full band that plays so hard the walls shake. I want to lose my voice with thousands of other believers, crying out to the Father.
I create those moments for myself as I wash dishes, listening to my playlist — it actually makes housework somewhat enjoyable when the kids aren’t underfoot. I imagine that I’m with the crowd of people that is cheering through the speakers of my iPhone, and there are no time constraints, I can worship for as long as I need to. At the end of it though, there is always this little piece of me that says, “Man, I want to do that. So bad.”
What it all boils down to is similar to what I talked about yesterday. He’s pleased with me now. He loves our smaller gathering of people, with just two vocals and a guitar, open hearts and a place of freedom for the Holy Spirit to move. He has even spoken to me of how incredibly valuable those times are to Him and to His people. If I never lead worship in the type of setting that I dream of, I will not have missed out. I am honoring the Father by leading period. I am not less than just because I am not more. I’m not receiving a consolation prize, like the enemy would want me to believe I am. “You’re never going to get there, so this is second best… maybe even third.” That’s what the enemy wants me to believe … which again speaks to that whole destination/arrival mentality that I talked about yesterday. And simply based on how the Father shows up when we are in those smaller gatherings, the fact that that could be considered “second best” is ridiculous. Those moments are straight up precious. What kind of Father would God be if He didn’t give us the absolute best? Just thinking about that feels silly.
As a parent, I definitely want to give my kids the absolute best that I can. Because of the economy and the reality of this life, I often have to give them second best, and I hate that. But the Father’s storehouses don’t run dry. He has the best of the best to give us, and He always will.
So, I’m not a household name in the worship circle, and my books may never reach more than ten people. I’m not trying to achieve anything here but the pleasure of my Father, and He has continued to speak over me that He delights in me… now. He isn’t waiting to delight in me. He isn’t anticipating this arrival on a grand stage, or a spot on the NY Times best seller list. He delights in me (you) right now.
Maybe someday my books will take off, and maybe someday I will get to rock out on the stage of my dreams, but if that happens, I will know beyond a shadow of a doubt that it was by the Father’s hand, and not mine.
1 Corinthians 1:26-29 (TLB) — “Notice among yourselves, dear brothers, that few of you who follow Christ have big names or power or wealth. Instead God has deliberately chosen to use ideas the world considers foolish and of little worth in order to shame those people considered by the world as wise and great. He has chosen a plan despised by the world, counted as nothing at al, and used it to bring down to nothing those the world considers great, so that no one anywhere can ever brag in the presence of the Lord… 31: As it says in the Scriptures, ‘If anyone is going to boast, let him boast only of what the Lord has done.’ ”
Please feel free to share this blog using the buttons below, and if you haven’t already, you can “like” my Facebook page HERE! 🙂