I love Jen Hatmaker's book 7: An Experimental Mutiny Against Excess. It address excesses in our daily lives while the majority of the surrounding world is pining away (um, literally) for basic necessities. I had another thought, though. What if? What if we conducted a little Experimental Mutiny in our local congregations? I mean at the very base level. What if we stripped away EVERYTHING that is excess, and we only presented the necessities? What if we had a music "fast" of sorts?
I think we are so spoiled and entitled, and if things don't go our way, we pitch a fit, withhold our funds, shake our fists, etc., and all the while the world around us is still homeless, suffering, dying, and longing for a Savior. Hold on with me a bit . . . one common theme I have heard in the past decade is that music style is completely dividing churches and the scenarios (toddler tantrums) I mentioned above are part and parcel to the experience.
So, what if we all got a little dose of reality and rediscovered what worship really is, and what it isn't? What if we stripped it down to the bare bones for just a teensy bit so we could recenter our thinking on Christ? What if??
I'm a musician, so I love music. Period. This would be difficult for me, and music is so vital to the faith community, it's absence may just be so shocking that we learn to appreciate what we do have a little more. So, what if we walked into our American church tomorrow to this . . .
Enter sanctuary/auditorium/gathering place. House lights/natural lights. Absolute silence. Someone begins reading passages of Scripture from the podium. This is immediately followed by a time of corporate, guided prayer centered around unity as the body of Christ and a call to action to love our neighbors and serve our community. The Pastor delivers a sermon, followed by a time of communion. Closing Scripture/Benediction/Prayer. Exit in silence. No media. No nothing. God's Word. Prayer. Breaking of Bread.
Would we all survive it?? Could we possibly learn something from this Experimental Mutiny?? Can we be reminded that music does NOT equal worship? I have no idea how this would work, what it would look like, or what to do after. I do know that as long as God's people are centering their everything around the foot of the Cross, the Gospel, all else pales . . . I do know that all we need is Jesus. He is enough. Maybe I'm on to something here . . . . maybe we should have a little Experimental Mutiny against our very selves . . . our own desires and needs. Strip it down so it's just us and Jesus. The end.