The other night after summer camp staff training I was really tired when I got home. It was around 10:30, and I had left for work at 6:50am. But I got on my computer to do my mandatory Facebook check, and I was blown away to see that The Rocket Summer was giving away a live CD from his most recent tour. I am a huge fan of TRS, I have been since his first CD (Calendar Days). I had gone to the first night of the tour, it was a solo acoustic tour with just Bryce. It was a giant sing-a-long. I’ve seen TRS a handful of times and this was by far my favorite. I knew he had recorded stuff from the tour to release on CD, but I was stoked (yeah stoked haha) to find out I could get it for free!!! So naturally, I went right away and downloaded it. The next logical step was to import it into iTunes and press play. I was instantly drawn in. I didn’t really care how long of a day it had been, how tired I was, I could not stop listening. In my head I could picture the show and how much fun Zeph, Jessica, and I had singing at the top of our lungs. So I ended up staying up for an extra hour just to listen to the whole CD. I highly recommend you go here and download it for yourself!
One of the things I have always loved about TRS and Bryce Avary is how passionate he is. You can hear it in his music, and there is no way you can miss it at a show. His music and his lyrics come from the heart, and it’s very evident. Even on his solo tour he was bouncing around the stage rocking out with an acoustic guitar. He was singing at the top of his lungs, he was jamming on the piano. When he told stories in between songs they were lively, fun, engaging. His passion was contagious and the whole crowd caught it.
That kind of passion is something that seems frowned upon in today’s society. It is like people either think you are crazy or have the “well that’s good for them” attitude. One of my favorite places to lead worship is at Vacation Bible School. The kids do not hold anything back when they are praising God. If you say to jump they jump, if you say to dance they dance, if you say to shout to God they shout. And they don’t do it grudgingly, they do it with huge smiles on their faces having the time of their life. They don’t care what anyone else thinks, they just want to praise God. It is so cool to see that, and I think that is what Jesus meant in Luke 18:17 when He said, “I assure you, anyone who doesn’t have their kind of faith will never get into the Kingdom of God.” Kids are completely unreserved and uninhibited. They may look foolish, but they don’t care.
In 2 Samuel 6:14-15 it says, “And David was dancing before the LORD with all his might, and David was wearing a linen ephod. 15 So David and all the house of Israel were bringing up the ark of the LORD with shouting and the sound of the trumpet.” David was so excited about God that he set aside his priestly garments and cut some rug. David was the king at the time, someone that was highly respect, someone that people looked to and followed. That didn’t hold him back, nothing was going to hold him back from being passionate about God. In society today people have become scared to death to praise God. A lot of people will consider you radical if you even raise your hands during worship. I used to be one of those people. I didn’t get it. I thought it was weird to lift my hands during worship, and forget about trying to get me to dance. For those people that wanted to do that, that was good for them, but they were a little weird. I was fine with just standing there, it worked for me.
Psalm 100 says, “Shout with joy to the Lord, all the earth! Worship the Lord with gladness. Come before him, singing with joy.” Psalm 149:3 says, “Praise his name with dancing, accompanied by tambourine and harp.” One thing I have learned as I’ve grown closer to God is that I can’t help but express it. I don’t lift my hands in worship because I think it is a mandatory worship move, I can’t help but lift my hands up in surrender. I don’t jump around in worship to look cool or to burn some extra calories, I do it because I am so excited about singing his praise. I’ve learned that it’s not weird, it’s natural. If you don’t believe me you can use this test. Take a 3-7 year old and put on music and see what their first instinct to do is. They will start to dance. They might not have any dance moves worth showing anyone, but they won’t care. They might not be able to clap on beat, but they’ll still clap. They may not know the words to the song, they may not know how to sing in key, but they will sing at the top of their lungs. God designed us to want to praise Him. Outward expression of praise is built into us. It’s not weird, it’s natural.
It’s time to start a movement of showing we are passionate about God. It’s time to not be afraid to do the things the Bible tells us to. It’s time to stop caring about what everyone else thinks, and care about what our Maker thinks It’s ok to be passionate about praising God. It’s natural to show Him. I’ll leave you with the words of Bryce Avary, “come on let’s see some action, I say it’s no secret, so don’t you keep it, come on and get on the floor and just break it out, get it all out and start freaking out. Just so we can make it out, get off your feet and make this count!!!”
until next time…