First published this post in October 2011…. having re-read it I figured it deserved another shot.
Just had an interesting moment!
Running “Spotify” on my phone, plugged into the Hi Fi, listening to “What does anything mean, basically” by The Chameleons – and its been a number of years since I heard it. Nearly every song evokes a strong, significant emotional response in me – you know memories of college, old friends that I haven’t seen in years, feelings of studying physics in the uni library, drinking in the student bar, playing in bands, the optimism of youth etc etc. Every song a winner, wave after wave of pleasure. Some of the musical arrangements are frankly beautiful; stunning almost – shimmering veils over pounding rhythms that wont let up. They should have been just MASSIVE. Bigger than the biggest thing ever.
Odd thing is, I found myself wanting to worship – like in a really good praise session in church, or when walking through the sunlit woods – you know – when the presence of God is … well… tangible. I could feel it welling up in my gut as I listened, a tugging, an unspoken longing for something spiritual, lasting just a moment. Deep calling to deep?
But what was this urge to worship that encompassed me? What is this desire to worship that is so truly innate, and deep within us? When I was part of the throng at a Chameleons or pre-conquoring the world U2 gig, the desire to express my appreciation of the music, to allow it to take over my emotions, and movements, to offer myself to it was real. This is what I was feeling just a few moments ago.
Offer something of myself to the music?
That doesn’t feel Holy to me. It doesn’t feel righteous. But who can deny the feeling of well being after a really good gig? There must be something really significant going on here. A deep need to worship, aching to find expression where it can. Something so “Primeval” that it can’t be ignored. Something that has to be expressed. Its our deepest ache, searching to find relief. And it will find expression.
At the risk of sounding dogmatic humans were made to worship (not solely, but certainly inclusively). Worship means many things, but at one level is about “Giving yourself” to something, about expressing your love, your adoration, and offering yourself completely to another. Ultimately, enjoying and appreciating the music is one thing – that is after all, part of the reason God gave it to us.
But, I for one don’t want to offer myself to anything other than Yahweh.
Since writing this I have been to see the The Chameleons – and, oh joy, they were as good as the used to be and played all my favourites. And did I worship?