Can They See Your Song?
I recently had the privilege to address a group of pastors and Christian workers in the state of Illinois, and I was asked to talk about leading a church service and leading the singing. We began in Psalm 40:3, “And he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the LORD.” I have written about this passage and spoken about it often, and I confess that I was a little surprised at how many people came to me afterward and said, “I had never seen that before!”
David said that the Lord had given him a new song and that many would see it. We would expect him to say that many would hear his song, but he said instead that they would see
We are constantly measuring the sincerity of others in communication.
it. How can you see a song? One could certainly hold up a piece of sheet music for others to see, but I doubt that is what the psalmist means.
We are constantly evaluating the communications of others. We must do this in order to ensure that we understand what they mean. Even when we engage in simple everyday pleasantries like, “How are you?”, we listen for the tone of voice in the answer. Most people would respond, “I’m fine,” but we could take these words to mean that they are having a good day or having a bad day depending on the tone of voice and facial expressions.
We are constantly measuring the sincerity of others in communication. This helps us to know when someone is teasing with us. Knowing that my son does not like broccoli, I may say to him, “We are having broccoli tonight.” He may choose to take my statement at face value, or he may remember that I have teased him before and try to discern whether I am teasing this time. He may attempt to see if my statement is genuine. He would observe my facial expressions, body language, and tone of voice to help him make a judgment.
What do others see in your song? Can they see that you are sincere? Can they see that you are thinking of the message of the song? Can they see that the truth of the song has made a difference in your life? Would they know that you truly love and worship the God that the song talks about? Would they know that you really enjoy knowing that you are saved?
There are many Christians who just don’t have a song. They attend church, but when the congregation sings they don’t participate at all. What does it say to those around us when it is time to sing and we sit silently in our pew? What would others think our opinion of the song’s message is? People would have to assume that the message of the song did not mean much to us if we were silent.
Some sing, but only with half-hearted effort. Mumbling through the chorus of Oh, How I Love Jesus is not going to do much to convince other people that you do love Him. Nor will it encourage anyone to love Him more. Many song leaders would fall into this same category. They are leading the song, but they don’t look like they have thought of the message one time.
David said that people would see his song, and that many would fear and trust in the Lord. David intended to sing in such a way that it had an impact on people. He wanted people to know how he felt about his God.
David’s approach is a good example for all of us, from the pulpit to the pew. No one will see our song, no one will feel the impact of our belief, until we are stirred on the inside to the point that it also shows on the outside. We need to think about what we are singing and allow the message to reach our hearts and stir us to want to share it with the world. When we can do this, the world will indeed see our song.