I stumbled across this five-year-old article the other day that I thought was interesting enough to pass on. Perhaps you were on the ball five years ago and you read it way back then, but I was not.
So go read the article, and then come back and read my thoughts. (For the lazy or overly busy, the synopsis is that techno music wizard Andy Hunter discusses using techno music in a worship setting.)
David Crowder and others have been merging techno sounds onto more standard praise and worship stuff for a while now, and the Apt.Core series got rid of most of the words, but I’ve never yet experienced pure instrumental techno done specifically for worship. Apt.Core doesn’t count because there were still a lot of words, and it’s not really what I think of as techno / dance music normally.
I’ve always been bothered by the idea of “Christian dance clubs.” I just envision a bunch of 16 to 26-year-olds coming and bumping and grinding all night long in the name of Jesus. I can’t get past the idea that there are a lot of better things to encourage kids to do than get together and dance with their boyfriends and girlfriends. It’s just asking for extra temptation and heartache in the end.
Anyway, I’ve never liked the idea of a Christian dance club, but after this article, I started seeing it differently. Instead of a dance club where couples pair off for dancing, it’d be really sweet to have a dance club where the DJ is a worship leader and people just come and worship God. Though the DJ may not say much other than a Scripture or two, if he’s doing it as worship and encouraging others to worship instead of just dance with their girlfriends, man it could be powerful.
Just imagine stepping into a dark room with laser lights, fog, colored strobe lights, pounding techno music, and hundreds of people all focused on worshiping God in their own way. Instead of feeling weird or uncomfortable or worldly, you feel the presence of God and can’t help but worship Him. Lyrics or no lyrics, the Spirit of God is present and strong, and He’s being loved.
What do you think of worship music without lyrics?
I like what Andy said about what can happen sometimes with songs we’ve sung over and over:
We’re reading these words and sometimes we’re just going through the motions. Sometimes I feel they go in one ear and out the other. Whereas I think with music when it’s instrumental, … [people] think, ‘How do you worship through this?’ I know that a lot of people say that it gives room for that person to express themselves to God in their own way, with their own words and because of that, it’s a lot more meaningful.
Sometimes, I worship God best with an instrumental CD, when the words that don’t quite express what I’m feeling won’t get in the way, or when I just want to feel God’s presence without saying anything back, or when I’ve got my own words I want to sing to Him.