Experiencing God’s presence is essential for the Christian Life. This is especially true for cross-cultural workers. In a previous post I wrote about Puritan Meditation and would like to add to that the importance of music in our meditation.
Recently I was reading Colossians 3:16 “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.” (ESV) I also looked at the parallel passage in Ephesians 5:18 & 19 “…but be filled with the Spirit, addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with all your heart.” (ESV) Now these verses are very rich but I want to focus on the place of music in being filled with the Spirit and letting the Word of Christ dwell in us (which, by the way, are not two different things!).
Music is powerful. I still remember advertising lyrics I heard as a child in the 1950s. Scripture is full of songs. When Paul writes about being filled with the Spirit and letting the word of Christ dwell in us richly, he speaks about singing. Yes, the singing is to one another but it is also ‘in the heart’ and ‘with the heart’.
The psalms (my church is singing through the psalms, one each week), hymns, and spiritual songs that we sing corporately can stay with us throughout the week cultivating our experience of God’s presence (the filling of the Spirit and the word of Christ dwelling in us richly). We can reinforce the power of music by singing these in our hearts before going to bed and when we wake up. We will find that the Holy Spirit will bring these songs to mind as we go about our daily business. We will be making melody to the Lord with all our hearts and expressing thankfulness in our hearts to God.
Try adding the psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs you sing corporately to your meditation through the week. Post a reply with your experience of God’s presence as you sing in your heart to Him.