This past weekend in church we had a special guest worship leader. Matt Rogers, an American Idol finalist and television host, is the brother of one of our board members. Matt and his sister led worship for us this weekend and the music had quite the country flair. Matt said Jesus is a country music fan, which completely turned my theology on its head. I had always assumed that country music was the work of Satan, sent to melt the ears and souls of humanity. In spite of my feelings towards country music, I have to admit that Matt did an amazing job leading worship this weekend and the music was great.
There are so many different styles of worship music today. Our church’s style is more contemporary but not necessarily as cutting edge as other churches. I went to my in-law’s church last weekend and it was contemporary but also very contemplative. There are as many worship styles as there are worship leaders and congregations. With all these different styles, it’s important to remember not any one style is right for worshiping our Heavenly Father.
Before this weekend I would have thought it impossible for me to worship God through country music. I really don’t like country music and I cannot wrap my mind around its popularity. Songs about red Solo cups and late-night, alcohol-fueled hookups really don’t do it for me. Maybe cowboy hats do something to alter the way country music sounds; listening to Toby Keith while wearing a cowboy hat makes him sound like U2. However, after this weekend and after worshiping God with twangy renditions of “Jesus Paid it All” and “How Great Thou Art”, I now see that worshiping God has less to do with the music and more to do with our hearts.
God gave us music to help our hearts connect with him, whatever shape or sound that music takes. If our hearts are set on connecting with God then nothing, including musical styles, should keep us from connecting with God. So whether it’s contemporary or traditional, country or cowboy-free, if our hearts are in it we can worship God. Some musical styles might make it more difficult for us to worship God, but isn’t our God is great enough to work through those issues?
What style of worship music do you prefer?