WORSHIP IGNITES WORSHIP
I received a conciliatory email today from Rusty Eason regarding my now well-publicized traffic ticket I got on the way home from the worship concert Friday night in Tullahoma where Tennessee Ladies Chorus and Tennessee Mens Chorale shared an evening of worship music with Grace Baptist Church. Granted, I was “flying high” from the events of the evening and perhaps not “keeping low” on the speedometer as I should have been. Anyway, Rusty’s kind note included a statement that lit my proverbial fire yet again, and I would like to extend his message as justification to ALL (that’s right every one) worship music leaders serving in our state who should be a part of the Tennessee Ladies Chorus or Tennessee Mens Chorale.
Rusty’s email said, “I was praying for a renewed passion in my own worship to the Lord and He gave me that.”
By title and intention that is precisely what this blogsite is for and about. Dear brothers and sisters, nothing is sweeter to my ear and eye than these words. Why? Because if we are perfectly honest we are all up and down in our journey of the faith walk that is worship leadership, or for that matter our very discipleship itself. We need reminders, refreshment, and renewal. When standing before our congregations weekly we may not sense freedom to say, “I need renewal.” Singing in the choir of fellow worship leaders the Lord may well choose to provide just such refreshment and renewal in surprising ways. This is crucial to why we continue the fellowship of ministry, the effort of musical mission, and the intentional gathering a few times per year to form the TLC and TMC as a musical and spiritual force. From our declaration that We Are Not Alone to the revelation of scripture in The Word was God to the personal testimony of Washed Away and the ho-down declaration of Lift High the Name of Jesus, right up to the Gospel story reiteration in Glorious Day I pray there were those of you singing who were finding such renewal and refreshment. I know you find it in the fellowship shared over meals, in your hallway greetings, and expressions following a concert. These are the very things prayed for regularly by officers, leaders, accompanists, and this director.
Friday night we welcomed Jason Logan (Springfield Baptist) and Matt Gluck (Trinity Manchester) to our ranks, as well as Carson Newman student Carlos Deleon, and of course were blessed to have Katy Beth McGehee, TJ Zimmerman, and Hannah Pinner of Youth Project fame to solo during the concert. All these new names and young faces represent lives of young(er) musicians serving the Lord through various levels of worship music ministry. Involving them in our shared ministry is a means of deepening fellowship, grafting ministering lives together in Kingdom work, and passing along the joy of Gospel sharing through music “from one generation to another.” Thanks to all of you for your participation in that process.
In order for our shared ministry to continue and flourish it is important that we keep contact with one another and keep eyes and ears open for others to whom the Lord would direct us who should be part. Whether big church, or small church, city or country, we are Tennessee Baptist Worshiping musicians ministering the Gospel of Jesus through song. It certainly helps me, when someone contacts me about needing someone whether to consider a new position of worship ministry or to come lead a revival or conference, to know you. One of my replies to such inquiries always includes whether or not an individual participates in our shared ministry through these groups or not. I believe it says something about a person’s humility and grasp of shared ministry practice.
Friday night was glorious!! I wish we did it at least once a month. Alas, however, we have some regional things happening through the Summer and the next time we gather will be September at retreat at Forest Hills Baptist Church with Keith & Kristyn Getty and prepare for more exciting times of sharing together again.