Nearly 20 years ago, I came to a faith in a Pentecostal church’s youth group. For the first few years, I was discipled in three places: in that church’s Friday night youth group; in that church’s Sunday evening “relaxed” service; and in a tiny, tiny congregational church on Sunday mornings. I am grateful for all three spaces and opportunities.
This week has been an especially hard week, and as I lean in to Scripture, prayer and worship, I have been reminded of those “relaxed” Sunday evening services from so very long ago. Unlike the morning service, the evening service was very open to letting the Spirit work as long into the evening as was needed. There was no rushing away from the altar, from the sanctuary, from prayer. The worship leader would stay and play so long as people were still in worship. It was in that space that I learned how to pray through singing. When my words failed, when my prayers were muddled, unclear, or too complicated to express, my heart and soul could be carried on the wings of the music.
I have, in a modified way, fallen back into that pattern this week. While I may not be sitting in a church sanctuary, laying down at the altar or raising my hands in utter surrender, I am worshipping through song as much as possible. If I’m walking, my earphones are in. If I’m home, my iTunes is up and running on the computer. If I’m in the shower, my Spotify app is running.
These are just a few of the songs that are ministering to me this week, as they all point to the promises and faithfulness of God.