By Alan Hope
When we were having our Team Talk on Thursday last week, one word leapt off the printed sheet that Nathan gave us and has been buzzing around in my head all week and especially after listening to Karen’s talk on Sunday. That word is ‘Commitment’. I decided to look at what the dictionary had to say about the word ‘commitment’:
- the state of being involved in an obligation or pledge.
- the state or quality of being dedicated to a cause
- a promise, an engagement, an involvement, a commission
We, as members of the Music Ministry Team have made a commitment. First and foremost to God our Father and secondly, and I don’t want to prioritise these two because I personally think that they are of equal standing, we have a commitment to our brothers and sisters within the fellowship here at All Saints and to our fellow Music Ministry Team members.
Our Commitment to God
Every one of us has a responsibility to respond to God’s call by committing ourselves heart, soul, mind and body; and to a life of service to Him, to sharing the Gospel through song, and to be His ambassadors in this fellowship and the world. We have a commission to fulfil through the pledge we have made to God and we have an obligation to him to obey our calling through music ministry. We have to dedicate ourselves to the cause of furthering His kingdom primarily by giving Him all our worship and by helping to bring others into a closer relationship with Our Lord. We have made a promise to God by our very membership of the Music Ministry Team to fulfil this commission.
As I have been putting these thoughts down the words of the song ‘This is My Desire’ have been running through my head. I think they capture exactly what I am trying to say.
Lord, I give You my heart, I give You my soul; I live for You alone.
Every breath that I take, every moment I’m awake, Lord, have Your way in me.
Our Commitment to Our Fellowship
Our commitment to our fellowship as far as the ‘doing’ part of it goes is, as I see it, to dedicate ourselves to engaging with them and through encouragement to hopefully lead them to a place where they can feel the Holy Spirit moving through them and into a sense of the presence of God in their lives. This in itself is an awesome responsibility that God has placed upon us.
Having stated that commitment I am still very conscious of the fact that quite often at the end of worship I myself rarely take the opportunity to commit to sharing time with other members of our church. This is usually for practical reasons such as putting instruments and music away which, when I think about it in all honesty, could wait until I have dealt with the far more important matter of getting to know my brothers and sisters in Christ within the fellowship. For me, this is a large part of what Nathan is speaking about when he refers to the ‘dwelling’ as well as the ‘doing’. The ‘doing’ I accept and continue to work on with God’s strength and support, it is the ‘dwelling’ that really needs all my efforts.
I have never forgotten what Graham said to us once, during a time when he was wrestling with his own situation and where he felt his own commitment needed to be looked at. He confessed that outside of the Worship Team members and a few friends within the fellowship he knew almost no one else within the congregation of All Saints, not even by their names. I have to confess that to a large extent I can apply those words equally to myself. For me personally, the ‘dwelling’ part should be an opportunity not only to be able to feel the closeness of my Lord and to come into His presence without the responsibility of the ‘doing’ side of things but to share that time with my brothers and sisters in Christ and through it to get to know them better as fellow Christians on the journey.
Our Commitment to the Music Ministry Team
Our commitment to the team should be one made up of an obligation to support and encourage each other through our dedication to the cause which we have taken up. We have not only made a promise to our God to engage ourselves with this commission that He has placed upon us but we have made a promise to each other to share our Christian love in all that we do within the team. Our worship should be as one whether it is in our selection of songs, our vocalising or in the playing of our instruments. It should always be to glorify our God as one voice and to display to others our commitment. In one final reference to last Sunday’s worship before I finish, I feel that was an occasion when we did exactly that.