Went to two house churches this weekend and came away realizing that I am still very much in transition from institutional-thinking to just plain caring about the people around me. I still find myself wanting our worship time to be a certain way. I still fight with the idea that "I know how to do it" (that old "leadership" mentality) and that it's my job to help others "do it" better.
The fact is, this is one hundred percent not true! I don't know anything about how others are meant to worship the awesome, creative, infinite God. Each person's expression of worship, no matter how quiet, different, or out of the ordinary, is incredible and beautiful to God. It's His job to orchestrate the hearts and expressions of His people.
But I have been trained well by a system in which a few people define what is "powerful" worship for the rest of the worshipping masses. I have learned to look for certain "evidences" of worship movement that are about my background and training. I begin to feel like I'm the "expert" (old tapes): the one who can "lead" others into a richer worship experience. In doing this, I am setting myself above others, seeking to take control away from God, and failing to love the unique worshippers as well as honor their unique worship expressions. This is control, not love.
Love is something completely different. It starts with realizing that I am just one of the gang and that each person has more to offer me than I could ever give to them. Love means to honor what the Holy Spirit is doing in each, appreciate what He is doing, bless what He is doing, and enjoy the way every heart expresses worship. Love is wanting others to be who they are. Love is enjoying how God created each of His children, and how much delight He gets from every expression of their heart toward Him.
It's amazing what happens as I, and those around me, are grasping this. People are beginning to find their own worship voice rather than try to imitate someone else's. Worship is becoming a wonderful, diverse mosaic of the hearts of God's people reaching for Him in an infinite variety of expressions. Not something I would orchestrate. No, I would never come up with what I saw happen this weekend. It didn't fit into my old pre-conceptions of "powerful worship." But it was, in fact, something far more incredible. It was something God was orchestrating!!!! Something more than "powerful." Something awesome. Something... of God.