Get out of your worship rut! Part 2
One topic that I wanted to discuss, however, is the value that tradition does bring. I sincerely hope that this series does not cause you to completely throw out your entire set of traditions at your church – if you are…or are even considering it…you are missing the larger point.
Traditions – when used at the right time – can bring about some great emotions and open some really great doors of experiences. As an example – each Christmas, you will find me watching (man-card alert) The Bells of St. Mary, White Christmas, and A Christmas Story. For the most part – the tradition comes because my mother raised me with culture. Those traditions evoke memories…and the memories make way for happiness. I can’t watch those movies and be upset.
In some of the same ways…I love hearing hymns that I haven’t heard in years…done the same way I remember them from years ago. They make me recall ways that the Lord moved in me during that time – and may even take new relevance in how God is moving now.
Those traditional songs are good…and tradition is good.
At the same time…I don’t want to watch White Christmas each week. What impact would it have on me? The new was already worn off on me with that film decades ago. Would that “tradition” bear the the same impact on me if I watched it each week? Most likely…no.
Likewise, singing the hymns of old each week don’t have the same impact with me each week. In fact, I would dare say that they have more “traditional-emotional” attachment to them than they do “spiritual-theological” content to most who sing them. Don’t believe me?
Really? We just lost eight out of ten of the congregants to scratching their heads, one just remembers the song and rejoices at the childhood memory, while the last has a degree in ye old English and understands the entire song. For everyone else….a strong dose of Tomlin and Baloche would go a long way.
“So what do we do with the hymns then? Use them on rare occasion and then lock them away the rest of the time? That’s blasphemy!” you say…