This past week many of our worship team (and church) went to see Rend Collective. What a worship night it was. During the evening, Chris Llewellyn, the lead vocalist, made this comment: Seriousness isn't a fruit of the Spirit, but joy is.
Let that sink deep in your heart.
Rend Collective had fun that night. And as a result, we had fun. The place was filled with great joy, because they were filled with joy... for HIM. And pointing us to HIM. Not a "happy go lucky, no cares" joy. A real joy. Pointed entirely at Jesus and the freedom he gives all of us. So the room was filled with jumping and clapping and crying and singing and shouting and praising and surrendering... all in joy. The band takes their calling very seriously and please do not mistake me... there were some very "deep" and "serious" moments. But the seriousness came from the truth of a word or the truth of where we stood in a particular moment with the Lord. But seriousness did not reign the night. Joy did. Because that's what Jesus provides. It's what he calls us to: joy.
Not seriousness. How can I say that?
Because the fruit of the spirit are listed in scripture (Galatians 5:22-25). The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.
Joy! Not seriousness.
Yes, there is a passage in Titus 2:7 which says we are to teach the Word with integrity and seriousness. If you look at the actual Greek word, you'll see that "seriousness" is more accurately translated as "dignity" or "honor". It's about giving great importance to the Word and exalting it above other things. It's a tad different than what we think of as "serious", which often is given the synonyms of stern, grave, somber, dour, grim, humorless. A quick search of the word "serious" uncovers only 4 uses of the word in the New Testament. Yet the word "joy" appears 59 times.
Again, don't mistake me. There are times for serious. But too often are our lives defined by it. That is NOT who we are! It's not why Jesus died! He died to give us JOY!
Live and worship in joy! ENJOY life. Throw some big glowing balls out into the crowd of your life and put on your panda head for no good reason other to have fun, because life in Jesus is FUN! (You Rend Collective fans out there will understand the references!)
worship Him 24/7...
PS - Any worship team members out there... don't forget this: Your visage on the platform leads people. If you are serious, those you lead are more apt to be in worship. If you are filled with joy, those you lead are more apt to be in worship.
Get out there and have some fun!