I knew it was going to happen! Since Independence Day fell on a Sunday, I knew someone was going to ask the question "How many patriotic songs are we singing in the Sunday Service?" However, I was not expecting to be attacked for not doing enough patriotic music. I had a member of our congregation inform me today that I was not very patriotic or American for only doing 2 patriotic songs in our Worship Service. I realize that by typing this post, I am possibly opening myself up for some criticism...but I just need to voice my feelings.
Let it be said that I am extremely humbled and fortunate to be an American. We all know that we are blessed to have the freedoms that we have and to live as we do. I am very aware of the sacrifices that were made by the many men and women who have served in the Armed Forces-past and present.
Sometimes I feel that there are people in the world who blur the line between their political views and their spiritual calling. I think on days like today we have to be careful that worship remains focused on Him and not become worship of our country.
I confess to you that I some times struggle with how to balance my faith and my Christian convictions with my civic responsibilities and allegiance. How do we appropriately express our patriotism without giving the impression that our ultimate trust is in our government rather than in our God? Amazingly, my devotion time this morning lead me to Psalm 76. Take a moment and read it...for this psalm was helping me to see how God can be honored because of His work in our land.
As a worship leader, it is my responsibility, first and for most, to help lead people into a personal encounter with the Living God. So when it comes to holiday events, on Sundays-like today-though I want to respect the said event, I do not think it should be the reason why we are gathering together. Personally, What we did for our service today was a wonderful representation of who we are as Americans...but more importantly, as children of God. Today it was my responsibility to remind people that not only do we celebrate the freedom that we have to worship our Living God, but we celebrate the freedom we have gained by the sacrifices of Jesus Christ.