Another faith post, but with a twist. Music. Yeah, I listen to “Jesus music” believe it or not.
Music moves me, inspires me, guides me, encourages me, speaks to me. With music, I am not only able to express myself creatively, but I am also able to project my emotions on the song. There are many emotions that are present in even just one day, and with music, I can release those emotions freely.
Many of you know that I am a worship leader for one of the parishes in the area and have been leading worship for a few months now. In the beginning, leading worship was surreal and hard to grasp. I was focused on performing and showing myself vocally because that was what I was trained to do in my formal choir experiences. I thought, “Maybe if I sang well enough, the teens would sing along.” I viewed it as a performance and focused on my vocal progressions, phrasing, even my dynamics to give myself a challenge on my pieces. In my first few nights, I sang as best as I could and was automatically praised by the teens and was greeted with hugs and thank you’s. The teens liked it, so I think they want me to stay.
The third and the fourth night passed, and I began to grow comfortable with singing harmonies and singing with the microphone. With that comfort as well, I fell in love with the music and even listened to it in times other than the car ride before Wednesday nights. I studied the words and tried to seek the message in all of the songs. While my love for worship music grew, also my passion began to pour out into my voice. I then started to pray for the teens each night I sang. I prayed for their connection with God, for their hearts to be open, and for their brokenness to lead them even closer to Christ. And with all that progression… I grew stronger. My hands would raise as I sang, my voice would shake from the intensity of the prayer sessions. I fell in love and am still in love with the impact I can make on these teens with my voice. The teens, every Wednesday, are beaming with the love of God.
Before Stefan and I’s first retreat as a duo, we searched for new songs to try – one of the songs being Broken Vessels (Amazing Grace) by Hillsong Worship. This song is basically a spin off of the traditional amazing grace, and so much better in my opinion. Such a gorgeous, gorgeous song. I was hesitant to try to even compare to the girl’s voice in the song, but with a few key changes, I was able to project fully to do the song justice. While you read my favorite lines and the breakdown of those lines, I encourage you to listen to the song.
Coincidentally, one of my favorite lines are the first few lines in the song…
All these pieces, broken and scattered
In mercy gathered, mended and whole.
For a few days now I have tried to nail the interpretation of these lines and bring some insightfulness to my readers. Honestly, though, the lines are as simple as you are reading it to be. You are in pieces, you are broken and scattered. What resolves this problem and what brings you together is God’s mercy. As you sing out these lyrics, note who this mercy is given to: the broken. One of the biggest things that we try to teach the teens goes along with this C.S. Lewis quote:
“The Christian does not think God will love us because we are good, but that God will make us good because He loves us.” – C.S. Lewis
We try to show the teens that God will never deny you or choose to not bless you. No matter how terrible of a person you think you are or what you’ve done, God will NEVER stop loving you (inspired by Deuteronomy 31:8 and Hebrews 13:5). God wants and yearns for a connection with you. He wants to rebuild you after your brokenness, not push you away because you are broken. Like many people say, “church is for the weak.” So accept that weakness and be overflowed by the grace of God.
Empty handed, but not forsaken
This lyric as well ties along with the first theme. Many try to distance themselves from God because they feel that they do not have enough to offer God. You can be without a penny to your name and still give God all that you have. My giving your heart and control to God, he will be pleased!
So take this heart Lord, i’ll be your vessel
The world to see, your life in me
Lastly, the best lyric of the entire song in my opinion. With worship leading, I give myself to God in the times I sing and become his vessel. I allow him to use me to spread his love, spread the gospel. You may feel like you are not equipt or knowledgable to educate others on Christ, but God will give you everything you ever need. In this way, he uses my voice to do so.
Please also enjoy this video featuring maybe 30 seconds of me singing this beautiful song at a Sunday faith formation prayer service (skip to 6:24 on the video if you want to just hear the singing). I do encourage all of my readers to watch the entire video. God’s love and message can be displayed through so many mediums. In this, you will see three – speech craft, dance, and song:
Thank you so much for reading this! Please comment and share if you please. Have a blessed day everyone!