I haven’t written a post in quite some time and now it’s time. As you most likely already know (since you clicked on this link) there is an upcoming worship conference in Philadelphia (October 5th and 6th) called, “Awake My Lyre.” If you register by September 15th, you will receive the Early Bird Discount! THIS IS AN EVENT FOR EVERYONE, NOT JUST WORSHIP LEADERS!
Now, I know that there are an awful lot of events posted on FB and like most people, I glance at it and say to myself, “Oh, that looks cool. Maybe next year because I’m super busy right now.” I think that maybe, just maybe, you have no idea that your life will be changed.
Maybe that’s not the problem. Maybe you do.
You do recognize that your life is going to change and you don’t want it to. You are fine with waking up every morning and feeling that feeling of needing to just get through your day and survive so that you can come home and relax with your wine and TV. After all, you deserve it. Now, I don’t have a problem with relaxing, wine, or TV at all (in fact, those who know me know I enjoy a glass of red). I’m trying to dig at the joylessness of life that so many of us get trapped in. We feel the monotony of life and sadness in our spirits and think this is all there is to life so grin and bear it.
All of the above is a lie. We don’t have to grin and bear it. We don’t have to wake up and groan that a new day is here. We don’t have to count the days until the weekend only to find ourselves at Monday again. This cycle will never end when our mind is stuck. And our minds are STUCK.
I’m going to tell you something that may shock you. Maybe not.
“YOU ARE A WORSHIPPER.”
What? What do you mean? I don’t sing, I don’t like to clap, and I really don’t like worship music.
“IT DOESN’T MATTER. YOU ARE WHAT YOU ARE.”
A butterfly can wish that it is a tiger all it wants, but it will never be something it isn’t. It will always be a butterfly. You will never be something that you are not. You are and always will be a worshipper whether you admit it or not. Why do we struggle so much with claiming our identity? Not just claiming our identity, but living our identity. For being a worshipper is our identity and everything else that you DO (relationships, kids, work, hobbies, relaxing) simply flows from that. Does that surprise you? If when someone asks you, “Who are you?” the first answer that comes to your mind is what you do, “I work in computers,” “I am a Mom,” “I’m a student,” “I’m a lawyer,” then maybe that statement is surprising. That list is a list of what you do, but not in the least who you are. Sorry. But, I’m not really sorry.
“Does being a worshipper mean I need to lead worship, play an instrument, clap on beat? I have a hard time even going to church.” No, no, no. Being a worshipper means that you are created with an emptiness inside that can only and will only be filled by worship and relationship with your Father. That’s how you are made. That is why we look for anything and everything to fill this aching hole we have inside. When we are quiet and honest with ourselves we can admit that we have a gaping emptiness inside. Of course, we can only admit that in secret, not out loud to the world because then we are admitting that we are weak and don’t have everything figured out.
We work so hard and try with all of our human might to fill in this hole with (fill in the blank here) but no matter how hard we work and strive to fill up this hole, it will always be empty. Always empty. Empty.
So, now you quietly admit that you are a worshipper. This must means that you are happy and the empty hole is always filled and you feel amazing all the time. Nope, sorry.
Now that the butterfly recognizes it’s identity that it is who it is, it needs to stop trying to eat meat like the tiger does. It needs to go to the flower and drink the nectar to be filled. That butterfly needs to fly and drink everyday and be in relation with the flowers that it feeds from.
Where do you go from here? YOU COME TO THE CONFERENCE! Stop making excuses and decide that TODAY is the day with a capital T that you are going to be who you ARE. (Danielson Lyrics for “The Lord’s Rest”)
I don’t know all the ins and outs of what will happen Friday night and Saturday. I do know that you are welcome whoever you are to come and have your mind and eyes adjusted. Don’t you want to start living? Don’t you want to be encouraged and continue to live in the fullness of who you are? I see the list of excuses running through your mind, but none of them matter. YOU are the one who truly matters—why aren’t you taking care of YOU?
I don’t want to hear any of you say, “Well, I’ll pray about it.” We all have the freedom to make choices to do what we want. You are allowed to just choose to do this and experience this NOW.
Let me tell you about the guests:
My dad, Lenny Smith has been singing and worshipping all my life. You may or may not remember his worship song, “Our God Reigns” that at one point was the Pope’s favorite worship song. He has led worship and song in every denominational church—his heart and his song are only for the Lord. He is raw, he is honest, and he is real. Lenny is Lenny and he sings Lenny’s song! His newest album will be available at the conference and believe me, you won’t want to miss it (and not just because I’m singing on it!)
When looking for a third speaker, I tossed around a bunch of names. I was on the phone talking to my Mom and she said, “If you don’t have Chris Falson at this thing, you shouldn’t even bother!” Strong words I know, but Chris is a man who will touch your spirit like none other. He has a plethora of impressive credentials and you would know him as the one who wrote, “I See the Lord,” but at the end of the day, he is a man who hears from the Lord. His song will reach you in a new way and I can’t tell you what is up his sleeve, but believe me, it’s going to be good!!!!
For those of you who are familiar with my brother-in-law Glen’s music (SOUL JUNK), you will know that he is as real as real gets. Rocking the joyful noise of the Lord in all venues (bars, festivals, and churches) for over a decade, he is a worshipper that owns who he is. His latest worship album, “Thank You,” is one of the most powerful works I have ever heard. It’s that good. Glen brings all that he is to the table and you will be so encouraged in who you are.
All of these speakers/worship leaders bring something completely different to the table. You need to know that YOU are different too and instead of feeling like you need to fit into someone’s box, you need to know that you are your own box. Come and join us at this very special event. It’s really an eventful thing to have all three of these guys together under one roof. It’s never happened before.
On Saturday night there will be an open-mic worship night, so submit your song asap so we can all worship together and celebrate all of our unique differences! There are limited seats for this intimate time together, so make sure that you get yours now!
I cannot wait to see you there.