Before I dive too much into today's topic, I wanted to recap on last night. In last night's blog, I ranted about how I didn't want to pray to God out loud because I thought it would make me feel uncomfortable. All the while as I was writing, this tiny voice kept telling me, "You can't say you don't like something you've never tried." (A statement I have spoken to my children at more dinner times than I can count.) So choosing not to become a hypocritical parent, I went ahead and prayed out loud. I believe the first words out of my mouth were, "Dear God, I am so sorry that I am making this so awkward..." I think He forgave me. ;)
I am glad that I tried the exercise, though I am not sold on this form of prayer. However, I think I managed to grasp the bigger lesson in it: praying with your heart is more meaningful than praying with your head.
So moving onward...
Today's lesson focused on loving the Lord with your soul. Yesterday I said that the author translated soul into decisions. Today he expounded a little more on this translation and said that your soul is your "will to decide...the passion with which you are living...your personality." I think I like these descriptions better.
Tonight the part of the topic that struck me most is when Holladay talked about loving God personally. He explains that since God has given us all unique personalities, we will all show our love for God in unique ways.
This especially spoke to me, because I do not always fit in with everyone else at our church's worship service. I love to sing. In fact, it might be one of my top 5 favorite things to do in life. I used to be in the church choir, and for multiple reasons (mainly the birth of my son and the driving distance to church) I have had to step down from it. Though my experience in the choir were almost completely enjoyable, I had a few moments that made me pretty uncomfortable.
To name a few...
-I love to sing words. But I don't always understand the oooohhhh lalalalas whoa whoa's that come along with it. Especially in worship songs. Good for karaoke maybe, but not good to try to have a congregation of people follow along with. Every time we did those, and even now, I am one of the few that doesn't join in.
-I am not a clapper. I am a foot-tapper, head-bobber, and sometimes side-to-side shaker if the music is hitting me right. I cannot do forced clapping to the beat. It doesn't feel authentic to me. I especially don't like when "clapping games" are implemented during worship songs. Some people are really into it, and good for them! But I am always the odd duck standing still when the clapping begins.
-Once, during a Christmas program, the choir sang "Silent Night." Cool. I'm down with that. Then, out of nowhere, the choir director has us sing a verse in Spanish. (Here's where I should probably explain that I am living in El Paso for those who didn't already know that.) Took some German in high school and college. I know absolutely zero Spanish. So here I am, trying to "read" the words on the screen which doesn't help at all if you don't know the phonetics of a language. So with the microphone hanging in front of my face and a crowd full of people staring at me, I continued to sing the song the only way I knew how: auf Englisch. I was pretty mortified in the moment, felt a little guilty after the moment,(would people think I was refusing to sing in Spanish?) and decided after the moment was over that it probably would have been a better idea to not sing at all during that part.
So what am I able to gather from all this after today's lesson: I don't always clap, or sing oooo-nananana, or follow the exact words on the screen, or even pray out loud, but I do love my God. And as long as He knows that, I guess I shouldn't worry if I'm doing what everyone else is suggesting.
Sha-lalala- skibbity bibbity- mmm bop! (Sorry, guess I had a couple more of those in my system!)