Psalm 124. Ascending Song: Step #5.

Today’s Lectio Divina: Excerpts from Psalm 124. (MsgB)

A Pilgrim Song of David.

If God hadn’t been for us —all together now, Israel, sing out!—
If God hadn’t been for us when everyone went against us,
We would have been swallowed alive by their violent anger,
Swept away by the flood of rage, drowned in the torrent;
We would have lost our lives in the wild, raging water.

God’s strong name is our help, the same God who made heaven and earth.


God bless worship leaders.

If it weren’t for worship leaders, I’m not sure what the Church of Jesus Christ would look like today.

Why, if it weren’t for worship leaders, most of us would be sitting in our pews looking like those three goofy little monkeys with their hands over their eyes, ears and mouths.

Good worship leaders lead.

They put it on the line, Sunday after Sunday. Getting up there on the stage and making a complete fool of themselves. They aren’t there, like musicians in the everyday world, trying to build an audience for themselves, but are doing their very best to get God’s people to get up off of their butts and raise a round of praise and worship to our Most High King. Sometimes it works. But sadly, there are more Sundays than not when the only ones worshipping are the guys and gals on the stage. The rest of the church, sadly, came to spectate. Watch the worship rather than participate. Sit back and be entertained rather than get up out of our seats and join in the songs.

Oh man, it’s hard sometimes.

Worship leaders, the good ones, you see, don’t let it show that they are dying inside each time they lead out in high praise and see so few pew-sitters respond.

Apparently, King David had the same problem many worship leaders have today. Note in Psalm 124 when David starts his chorus, he has to stop before he gets to line two and do what just about every worship leader has to do from time to time…

Coax the crowd to make this song an ‘us’ song instead of a ‘me’ song.

See it. Right there in the second half of verse 1.

If God hadn’t been for us —all together now, Israel, sing out!—
If God hadn’t been for us when everyone went against us,

All together now, Israel, sing out!

That’s worship leader talk for “come on you stupid people, I’m up here singing my heart out to God while you’re sitting there in the pew looking like a sleepy owl.”

As I see it, the very best worship is when the entire congregation is singing their hearts out to God. Oh sure, that may not sound as professional as when the paid choir does their thing, but in my thinking, our corporate worship is why God comes to church. He’s there to hear us sing, not just the talented guys and gals on the stage.

So. Next time you’re at church and you see one of those brave worship leaders up there on the stage doing their best to lead us into worship, get off your butt and give ‘em a hand. When the song leader sings out, “all together now, folks, sing out,” let’s cooperate and actually do it!

Who knows what might happen when all of God’s people come prepared to sing out to Jesus? Gosh. Just imagine? Maybe that revival we all want to see just might break out after all.

All together now, God’s people, sing out!

My prayer: Father, thank You for worship leaders. Men and women who take it upon themselves to use their musical prowess to help us worship our hearts out to God. May You bless those who serve our churches in this capacity. May You encourage them for the hard work they do Sunday after Sunday. May I be motivated by the Spirit to no longer sit by idly and watch them work while I relax and enjoy the fruits of their labor. Empower me to join in their song. For Your name’s sake. Amen.

My questions to ponder: So when was the last time I thanked a worship leader for the hard work they do? How can I show better appreciation for the musicians at my church, giving them encouragement and joining with them in their valiant efforts to bringallof the people together in corporate worship and praise of our High King?

So what is God speaking to you today as you ponder the Psalms?


Over a 50-week period, you and I will take a deeper look at The Psalms: God’s Songbook of Prayers. In order to keep all the blog sessions organized, we suggest you bookmark our Contemplating the Psalms home page for ease of use. Keep in mind that one of the best ways to explore the on-going applications of this blog series is to walk alongside a biblically-based, Christ-centered spiritual director who is familiar with how to make material like this part of your overall spiritual formation in God. Many of our directors in our Contemplative Activist network are available to companion you in your journey with Jesus. Click here for more info.

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