Catch Up : Introduction
Part 1: Preparation 1
Don’t undermine your intelligence and don’t undermine your audience’s intelligence. When you open your mouth you’re communicating something spiritually and your audience can understand what that is. I had this conversation with my sister about how songs aren’t just necessarily “secular” or “Christian” every song carries a spirit behind it, sometimes in a strongly negative way, like you hear a song and you feel weird in your heart, I can’t describe it, it’s just something you know, then there are songs that lift you up and you can practically see your spirit dancing in the clouds, then there are the songs that are secular but that still make your heart happy and your spirit is content. Anyway, I think you just have to be aware of stuff like that.
The audience can understand your conviction and lack of and that directs them either with you to God’s presence or away from you and maybe even away from His presence.
We have a saying here in Kenya, “Empty debes make the most noise” debes=tin cans. Worship is spiritual warfare; if you’re being dramatic and inauthentic, it’s like bringing a plastic knife to a gun show. Those demons either come in and kick your butt from here to low hell or they ignore you because you’re not a threat, you’re just a bleep in the radar.
Authenticity is just the truth. It begins in the spirit and manifests physically.
So what happens when you have to lead a happy song when you’re not happy? Is it being authentic to sing this song sad or depressed because that’s the reflection of your mood? No. We need to believe who we’re singing about and sometimes that may look like going back to the A, B, Cs of our faith that is having faith. It’s singing this song from the attitude of, “My life sucks right now, but it won’t suck forever!” like Jenn gave this example once, or, “God, I’m not happy now, but I trust in you to make me happy.” Or “God, I’m not free yet, but I believe I will be.” Sometimes it’s just consciously deciding, “I left all this stuff going on out there, but right now I’m going to worship God and focus all I have on Him not for any reason other than He deserves it.” Kim Walker-Smith said this once.
One time, I was alone in my room and I was trying to get my “God hat” on watching a Bethel worship set, and I was just not feeling it, but I remember that day this spontaneous song come out of me, “I’m going to worship like it’s already been done!” Come out of me is actually a mild term, that line practically burst through me and through all that hopelessness and defeat I was feeling. My point is, God comes through.
Abandon is surrender to God, to the performance, to yourself and to your audience. It’s he deliberate laying down of the ego. Enjoy yourself, people more or less tend to mirror you.
Neema said, think about authenticity like a rubber band, the further in you can go, the truer you become, the further out you can soar when it’s released. That’s when a song goes from your gut into the audience’s gut. The true performer masters the art of balancing between doing it for God/themselves and doing it for others.
See you next week for the last part of this series!