I won’t talk about the snow... I won’t talk about the snow... I won’t talk about the snow... I won’t talk about the snow...
But it’s been five weeks in a row now that it’s snowed on Sunday. It’ll be roughly 80 degrees on Friday and then again on Monday--but between those days, it snows on Sunday? There’s a spiritual lesson to be learned in there somewhere, but I’m not quite smart enough to see it...
Speaking of “things God seems to be trying to tell us,” we began our Small Group Bible study on the Song of Solomon this past Friday evening, then started looking at the hymn that Paul wrote to the church in Philippi in our Adult Sunday School this Sunday morning, then continued our journey through “The Bible--The Musical!” in our current sermon series. It’s like God was trying to maybe make a musical point in all of that.
“But wait!” you’ll counter. “Those are all things that YOU chose to teach, Pastor Kevin!” And you’d be right. Except that I’d planned to start that Bible study on the Song of Solomon back in December (on request by people in the group), but schedules pushed that back a bit. And I’d thought that we’d be hitting this Pauline hymn in Philippians in early February, but people have been unusually (and enjoyably) interactive in Sunday School. I never intended for all of these things to hit all at once, in one weekend.
So three times over, in rapid succession, I found myself asking slightly different groups of people, “Why would God want this part of His Word written as a song?”
The Song of Solomon is about romantic relationships, with little to no theology directly being expressed. The section in Philippians is about Christology, focusing on describing the attitude(s) of Jesus that Paul wants us to emulate. The song of David in 1 Chronicles 16 is about giving thanks to God for all that He is and all that He’s done in our lives. Three totally different kinds of chunks of Scripture... so, “Why would God want this part of His Word written as a song?”
Then again, there are some similarities between those sections. All of them are dealing with deepening relationships and making them more intimate in God-honoring ways. The Song of Solomon is ultimately about doing that between a husband and wife, as God intended, and thus as an act of worship. The song in Philippians 2 is about what Jesus Christ did to come close to us and build intimacy with humanity as an act of conscious worship to God. The song of David is about us coming close to God as an act of worship in response to all that our Lord has done to love on us as His people, His children.
Music tugs at your heartstrings (which is why some songs make us clap, some make us cry, and some make us angry that people have changed the familiar arrangements that we knew and loved). It’s intended to make a personal connection -- and thus, it’s a perfect avenue for expressing the personal connections that God wants to make with each of us. Sure, we can all zone out sometimes, but it’s a lot harder to do that when we’re actively singing than it is to do that when we’re just listening to a pastor preach.
So how might God be wanting to make a personal connection to you today? Is He wanting you involved in the musical of how a romantic relationship really ought to be lived out? Is He wanting to remind you how much He loves you--that He came close to us and died to bring you to Himself? Is He wanting you to come close to Him, to be holy and come into His presence with the joy He sculpted you to have? What part of the Lord’s musical do you find yourself in today?
Take the time to want to be engaged with what He’s singing in your life...