Broken Hallelujahs. He doesn’t want pretty.

One of my favorite songs has this line

“I’ve seen your flag on the marble arch
Love is not a victory march
It’s a cold and it’s a broken Hallelujah”

That is a beautiful picture of what worship is, what a hallelujah really sounds like. I think I have fallen into a rut over and over again, where I begin to worry I don’t “feel” like worshiping, or I don’t think I am good enough to worship a perfect god. I’m too dirty, or, I am not feeling the spiritual emotions flowing through me. But, as I begin to look at what God asks, when he asks to be worshiped. It’s not in some Sunday morning service by perfect people, It’s not by the person on stage telling you to “Press in a little more.” then, God’s presence will finally be with you.

It’s by broken and dirty people. The psalms were written by an adulterer and murder. On a cross Jesus takes a dirty bloody criminal to paradise with him.

Worship is not this thing we can just cut off and compartmentalize into a half an hour, once a week. living only in another clichéd song. Music is wonderful, but it has hijacked the term “Worship”. Worship is an every day, every second decision, to live consciously the way we were meant to. We get lost in a picture we see in our heads, that we form with phrases like “We meet you here at this place of worship” or “I fall to my knees to worship you”. When, God calls us to worship him, it involves getting off your knees more often than not and it is not confined to one place, or state of mind but rather, it is everywhere we should be making our place of worship.

We have turned worship into a group participation project in a youth group or church service, when, worship is what we should be doing every second of the day. I rarely feel spiritual and sometimes (don’t gasp) I don’t feel near to God at all. But that’s when I can really let worship happen-When I don’t think terrible things about the person who just cut me off on the 101, when a mother decides to give grace to her sinful children, when a man apologizes for yelling at his wife, when an addict cries out to God after a relapse, when you are alone in your room and you feel like you can’t even talk to a so-called loving god but you say “Not my will but yours”. That’s worship.

I hope you can get something out of my random thoughts. So I challenge you not to wait until the music starts at your next service to worship. But, start now, as you are working, or being with friends, driving, talking, and just living. Worship wherever you are however you can. It might be hard and it probably wont be pretty, but he doesn’t want pretty. He wants your hallelujah, no matter how broken it is.


10 thoughts on “Broken Hallelujahs. He doesn’t want pretty.

  1. Nathan, I love this post! I recently attended Women of Faith and saw Amy Grant. For the first time ever, I heard her song “Better than a Hallelujah” and fell in love with it. It basically has the same message as your post – that our actions in the deep pit of despair or in the mundane things of life, can be worship, and He sees it all.

    I think we’ve gotten so far off what God really wants from us. It makes it really hard to convince ourselves and others, that we don’t have to perform for Him.

    Thanks for sharing your heart!

  2. Great Post, Nathan! Worship IS supposed to be never ending…always on our lips…even in the dark time. Thank you for the reminder!

    Happy Thanksgiving!

  3. Thank you for this, and on my Worship Wednesday posting day as well! I am linking to this post from my site because it is the essence of what worship is that I want my readers to get. Thank you for the great reminder!!

  4. Excellent thoughts, Nathan! So true… how often I’ve been taking part in the worship music at church while not even thinking of the words.

    However, in the midst of trials in which I’ve had to remind myself to breath, my worship is directed straight to Him.

  5. Hi Nathan! I’m a big fan of your mom’s and she linked your blog in one of her blog entries. What a beautiful post! How desperately God’s people need to hear this truth. Thank you for sharing it.

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