I take my daily drive into work very seriously. I have a playlist of worship music that I listen to every morning. I make a big deal of queuing the most appropriate songs based on how my heart is feeling. The next 30 minutes are a non-stop praise fest.
There is very loud (and off-key) singing, raising of hands and sometimes crying. One morning I listened to “Out of Hiding” by Stephanie Gretzinger on repeat for the entire drive. I showed up to work a mess of tears, completely overwhelmed by how good God is to me. Consumed by the fact that He relentlessly draws near to me.
Lately though I haven’t felt like singing. Whether it’s grogginess from not getting enough sleep or annoyance because I couldn’t find the right outfit to wear, my daily commute has become silent. My usual morning routine has been hijacked.
It started out as a slow change. At first I would play my music and even sing the words, but my heart wasn’t in it. My mind was fixated on something dumb I had said two days before and wondering what people thought of it, or thinking of all things I had to do when I got to work. I would try to push the thoughts away and hold fast to the words I was hearing in the songs.
Eventually I succumbed to the thoughts in my mind. The music still played, but my thoughts were so loud I didn’t hear a word.
One day, I turned the music off altogether. If my brain couldn’t chill for thirty minutes, then I wouldn’t even bother. The thoughts in my head would counteract the painful silence of a car with no music. It seemed like I was fighting a losing battle so I threw in the towel. I was bitter and it definitely showed.
In a stunning act of kindness, God unraveled the tangled mess of my thoughts in my head and plucked something incredible from amidst the war zone.
“Sometimes when my heart isn’t in it, I feel like that’s when I really need to raise my hands in worship.”
God is funny isn’t He? A pastor I’ve known for years and really respect has said this on multiple occasions, and in the moment where my thoughts had overtaken me, had stolen my joy, God lifted this piece of truth from the recesses of my memory.
Sometimes it’s when my heart isn’t in it that I must be led by action. Sometimes it’s when I feel like I can’t draw near to God, that I need Him the most. And sometimes, it’s when I don’t feel like singing when I must shout the loudest.