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Singing And Praying

Encouraging Prayer / James Banks
The Truth Network Radio
June 25, 2022 12:00 pm

Singing And Praying

Encouraging Prayer / James Banks

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June 25, 2022 12:00 pm

James Banks and Robby discuss praising God through singing and songs.

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This is the Truth Network. Talk about singing and praying. This is such a practical topic, but really we don't often do the same thing at the same time, do we?

It's so true. I mean, a lot of our worship songs are really prayers, and it's important that we take a look at that today because it's helpful to think about what our hearts are like when we're talking to God. You know, sometimes we start to sing something and God kind of stops us with the Spirit and saying, uh, do you really mean that? Do you really mean that? That's exactly right. I've heard it said that the church doesn't speak her lies, she sings them.

And while saying that may be a bit of a punch in the gut, it's true, isn't it? Sometimes we may find ourselves saying things when we sing to God that, if we're being honest, we really might not, you know, naturally say that to Him. And that's a challenge because we need to be real with Him and everything. And if we're not careful, we can find ourselves singing something like, I give my life to you, and then go out and leave God's presence, you know, for worship, not mindful that we're actually still in His presence and, you know, not mindful of what we've just said to Him.

Yeah, so let's talk about that. I mean, let's say, you know, you're right in the middle of a worship song and one of those lines comes up and you realize, well, uh-oh, I'm not sure I can sing that. What do you do?

That's such a good question, Robbie. I think there are a couple of ways we could respond. One is to just not sing that part and to pray while we do, you know, just being honest. Something like, Lord, help me to want to do this. Or another approach might be to sing it, but while you're singing it, to pray, Lord, I want to be this way, but I'm not there yet and I'm sorry, please help me to, you know, whatever it is, to want to give you everything, to want to be all yours, you know, whatever it is that you're singing in that moment. Yeah, I like that approach because it's kind of like, you know, I believe, Lord, help my unbelief. I know that's what I am supposed to be and I know that's what I'm trying, but Lord, help me because, you know, you clearly know you're not measuring up to what it is you're singing while you're singing and it brings up another question that honestly, I mean, while we're singing, are we actually praying?

Well, you know, we're supposed to be. I mean, if it's worship and we're singing to God, then that's what it is and this is just being honest, you know. Sometimes believers talk about not compartmentalizing our lives. We want to be the same way we are at church, that we are out in the world, and not compartmentalizing our lives really starts with our words. If we get into a habit of singing things without really thinking about what we're saying, I think it can lead to our sounding insincere and we don't want our faith to be a show. No, I think I see where you're going with this. I remember, you know, that we had a mutual friend who told you once, James, you know, you sound much holier than you really are. I know, and it was some of the best advice I was ever given, but it was also a bit of a whack upside the head.

Yeah, it's, you know, when we talk sometimes, you know, it just is hard to know, you know, you seem to get led into a place that you didn't expect to be there, but now that you're here, you know, you really want to mean what you say. Yeah, yeah, we do. There was an old Jewish legend that said that when the priest went into the Holy of Holies, bells were tied around his waist and a rope was tied around his ankle, so if he died in the presence of God because of his own sin or because the sacrifice was inadequate, then they could drag him out of there. But interestingly, that's not in Scripture, and it's not who our Heavenly Father is. The truth is, all of our prayers are imperfect, because we are.

You and I both love C.H. Burton's book of prayers morning and evening, and listen to what he wrote about this for the evening of October 27th. He said, Even in our most angelic frame of mind, our songs that rise to heaven and seek to emulate the angels' music have human discord in them. The prayers that move the arm of God are still bruised and battered, effective only because the sinless one, the great mediator, has stepped in to take away the sin of our request. By itself, the most golden faith, the highest degree of sanctification a Christian ever attained on earth, still has so much impurity in it so as to be only worthy of the flames. Every time we look in the mirror, we see a sinner and need to confess we are like an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are like filthy rags. Oh, how precious is the blood of Christ to hearts like ours! How priceless a gift is his perfect righteousness!

How bright the hope of his perfect holiness to come! I love that! Yeah, like, ouch! I resemble that comment. But you know, when you think about who's saying it, like if this is what Spurgeon said, what am I saying? Where does that leave me?

Oh, it's not good. Yeah, I know, I know. But the beautiful thing about this is, you know, we can come to Jesus and give him the whole mass and trust that he loves us and is with us and will help us work it all out and bring us where we were always meant to be at home in his presence. Can I get an amen to that? Oh yeah, absolutely, amen. Do you mean that? Absolutely, absolutely.

Just checking. But seriously, I'm so glad we're talking about this because we need to! It's a part of living in touch with God, living genuinely before him. It really is, and the more we're real with God, you know, about this, the more progress we'll make, because like Psalm 138 says, he cares for the humble, but he keeps his distance from the proud. Yeah, and if you think about it, all of this really makes sense when it comes to worship, because worship is an act of giving ourselves to God. It's not about singing songs we like, or just getting caught up in the music. It's a matter of getting caught up in him, but drawing closer to him. Right, and the closer we are to him, the more blessed we'll be.

Thanks, Robbie. Yeah, I mean, let's pray that God will help us to do this, to say it or sing it, and mean it. Yeah, let's do that. Father, please help us, help us to just be real with you and sing and so to be blessed, because you are so good. In Jesus' name. Amen. Amen. You can hear more from Pastor James by visiting his website, jamesbanks.org, or by visiting Peace Church in Durham, North Carolina. May God bless you and encourage you as you pray. This is the Truth Network.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-03-29 16:40:51 / 2023-03-29 16:44:35 / 4

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