Tuesday, 11 January 2011

This is the day ...everybody in the church is dancing ....downloading this week.

So I'm making the song available for FREE downloads this week. I've been wondering about the wisdom in it, considering that I intend to release a new album in June featuring the song, but have had numerous request for the trk. so here goes...Thought I'd write a bit about it.

It's one of those songs that you wonder about when writing, thinking , "how will this actually go down?". I've been really surprised at how well received it is and how much joy and celebration it releases.

It was inspired whilst reading Psalm 118 , particularly v 24.

It is essentially about Jesus being our salvation and giving us access to it through Him.
When the psalmist speaks of "This is the day", it most likely refers to the Sabbath.
Now, we can theologize about the sabbath, but I thought that I'd approach it symbolically and view it from a more New covenant approach, being that the Sabbath represents a day of rest. Our souls have found their rest/salvation in Jesus. So in some ways, everyday is a day to celebrate, particularly any gathering of the church regardless of the actual day.
I also got to thinking about salvation. The Psalm speaks about the gates of righteousness being opened. Well that's obviously through God's grace and mercy at the cross. Our righteousness comes not from ourselves but only through Christ.
So I thought, when we come together as God's people, the early church often regarded it as the sabbath,a dedicated time for devotion to God, we must celebrate in it, as the psalm says. The basis of this rejoicing and being glad is based on what Christ had done for us. So it's a reveling in His grace and mercy.

When the bible talks of rejoicing, dancing is assumed, so it led me into thinking that if we are to celebrate and be glad in "this day" of gathering , ...."everybody in the church should be dancing" !!! I thought, mmm catchy line maybe - so that became my little hook line.

I also like to keep the versus to the point and wanted to express the basis of our celebration as the focus.
One of my hobby horses is that we as Christians tend to say a lot, but often don't act upon or do, or even believe/perceive what we are saying. If we were truly amazed at His grace and mercy, the right response needs to be a demonstrative response. We've been Saved from death, damnation, sickness, shame, saved for abundant life, eternity, righteousness...so much.
Joy must be expressed, demonstrated. I guess that's why I often like to sing about dancing, even thought it's something we should be doing rather than talking about, so I hope that by singing about it, we would actually do it. There isn't just dancing in our hearts ...it must be translate to our feet if it's in our hearts ...let's get real !!!!
I also like the "everybody" idea. The communal aspect to dancing is important. Dancing in the bible would mostly refer to communal, round, dances. When we dance in church, it's not a rave where we're off on our own self-gratifying rave, but we rave together as a corporate people, celebrating in "our" not only my salvation.
I like to get people to sing to and encourage each other at the "everybody ..." section.

Gladness/joy is a major theme in the bible, but I don't see a lot of it around. When I lead , I often find the need to help people understand that they can be, should be, must be happy. As with dancing, joy is not only deep down in our hearts ..it must be expressed. The psalms say ... happy are those whose sins are forgiven ...mmmm. We need to be happy people, otherwise - are we living in the good of our sins being forgiven? -interesting argument. Sure we have a a deep inner joy, but the fruits of the Spirit need to be evident. Don't be so serious, smile a while and give your face a rest.

So, everybody in the church ultimately ...should be dancing. Even if it's a vague happy shuffle or sway.

When I got to thinking about melody and groove, I thought it has to have a dance groove to fit the message of the song.Which led me to a techno, synthy, rave/dance vibe - (not much like that around) and that's where the little music hook came in, which actually makes the song really.
I've found that if I want to play it and there's no lead instrument to play the line, I get the congregation to sing it ... can be quite fun and releasing as well.

I also thought that a nice music interlude/line allows space for people to give themselves to liberally dancing rather than singing and trying to dance, so this line gets repeated quite a bit when playing it, but it's all for a purpose.

We are a dancing army, God's a dancer, let's return the favour.

1 Comments:

At 24 April 2011 at 07:30 , Blogger john said...

If this were Facebook I would 'like' this post. I think you have a great perspective to bring to so many churches in England Evan!

I know some just don't like the style of worship you bring because they aren't comfortable with it but I hope that God will raise up more people to pioneer this idea of worshiping God with dancing being for the British too!

I'm not currently involved in music directing at my church but if I get the opportunity I always hope to share these thoughts with the members of our team. Similarly I found your seminar at mobilise last year excellent and love to point people to listening to that one!

 

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