Have you ever been in a circumstance where no one spoke your language? Maybe you could speak or understand a few words, but you were largely in the dark. Communication levels were low. Frustration levels may have been high. And there was probably a significant degree of discomfort?
But then you met someone who spoke your mother tongue – your heart language. And, oh what joy, what relief, what connection! There was a new sense of freedom and opportunity. Bottom line: good things can happen when someone speaks your heart language!
In Scripture we see this clearly in Acts 2. As the Holy Spirit came in power and the church was born, the Bible says that people from “every nation” heard the apostles “telling in our own tongues the mighty works of God” (cf. Acts 2:5-13, ESV). As a result, about 3,000 people heard the gospel, repented, believed, and were baptized that day (Acts 2:41).
The importance of “heart language” to the spread of the gospel has been confirmed by those who study missions. David Garrison writes:
“Worship in the heart language allows the gospel to flow freely through a people group. There are Church Planting Movements that have erupted among people groups who do not yet have the Bible translated into their heart language, but even then their worship, songs and prayers are expressed in their heart language. . . . Missionaries who take the time to adapt the gospel to the heart language of the people are aligning themselves with the way that God is at work.” (Church Planting Movements, pp. 231-232)
So, at Ingleside we have deliberately chosen to worship in three “musical heart languages” each Sunday morning. They are:
|Traditional||Piano and pipe-organ accompaniment
|Blended||Band and orchestra accompaniment
Choir and vocal team
A variety of song choices and forms
|Contemporary||Guitar-led, band-driven accompaniment
A lead vocalist or two
More contemporary song choices and forms
And, from time to time, we highlight one of these “musical heart languages” in special times of worship. For instance, on Palm Sunday evening our Chapel Choir concert, “Wondrous Love,” gave voice to the traditional “musical heart language.” And, it was a Spirit-anointed night of worship!
Similarly, on Thursday night, April 21, we will have a contemporary night of worship called, “No Other Name.” It will be led by Clay Scott, our Contemporary Worship Pastor, and Blake Jenkins, our Young Adult Pastor and will begin at 7:00 p.m. in our Multi-Purpose Gym. I hope you will plan to join us!
I’m grateful to be part of a church that has learned to speak more than one “musical heart language” in order to make disciples and to bring glory to God!
Your Pastor and Friend,