As I have had the opportunity to worship in various churches over the last two decades I have been blessed by the gospel focus in differing styles and traditions. Yet, one thing I have seen in some churches has left me greatly concerned; that is well produced and executed music that ultimately says nothing. I have heard too many songs sung to an unidentified God whose character remains unknown and whose mighty works seem to be limited to making us feel his presence. Music matters since it is the creation and gift of God. Music matters because God commands us to worship him in song; to ascribe praise to him for who he is, what he has promised, accomplished, and will do in the ages to come. So when we gather for corporate worship this Sunday both the music we make and the songs we sing should play a vital role, but I pray we are "proclaiming his excellencies" through it, recognizing that this is one of the ways we share in and herald his grace. This is for us and for others, but ultimately it is for Christ.
Grace is not just something we keep to ourselves, a privately glorious favoring. We sing of God's grace; we play of God's grace to the whole world. We do this two ways. First, the church tells of God's grace through song. Call these songs what you want -- gospel songs, hymns, chorales, choruses, and chant. If a good portion of them do not carry direct messages of grace and the remainder do not point to grace through other scriptural messages, then the church fails its musical task. Second, music itself, with or without words, is its own kind of grace. It is ointment poured over the feet of the Savior, a sweet ministry to ears, to souls, and to lives.
- Harold M. Best, Music Through the Eyes of Faith
As we lean into Sunday let's prepare songs for the people of God to sing that make much of our Savior. Let's prepare songs that will bless the Lord. And let's prepare our hearts to sing together of the Savior and the grace we have received.