Real Life, Real Worship

Author: Cody Kettner

Picture: Max Pixel, Pixabay

Real Life, Real Worship

In a recent interview concerning young Christian artists and songwriters, U2 singer Bono said: “We don’t have to please God in any other way than to be brutally honest; that is the root to a relationship with God, and a great song”.

He also said: “I want to hear a song about the breakdown in your marriage, I want to hear rage at injustice and to hear a song so good it makes people want to do something about the subject.” 

Bono is correct in calling worship artists to write brutally honest songs. We need to write from our own personal experience how God’s goodness has blessed our lives and when we feel He has abandoned us.

We need to write both about our struggles with sin and about God’s endless mercy and reckless love.

Finding The Balance

Sometimes I feel fed up and hopeless. I struggle to see God’s presence in my life.

At these moments, I take my eyes away from my circumstance and sing praise to God for who He is and what He does. Through praise, I am given strength and hope.

I have been in a time of ‘wilderness’ for about 2 years. Most of the material I have written concerns God’s faithfulness. I write about how God is everything I need, how He will provide for me and fulfil me (Philippians 4:19)

Personally, I write songs I need to pray at that time.  Pain, shame, grace and redemption are all subjects I would include in songs I write.

Whilst I often only see myself as a broken, sinful man who needs a saviour, I am learning to see that God has created me good and He is merciful, tender and generous (Psalm 116:5-7). This is reflected in a recent song I wrote, Into the Wild:

The Power Of Praise

When leading worship, I always stress the importance of praise. I encourage people to come to God with everything- loss, pain, fear, illness-and to praise Him, not in spite of their circumstance, but in the midst of it.

Praise launches us into His presence, the place where honest conversations really happen.

Once people arrive at a place of worship, of real intimacy with God, the words of the song take a back seat and all that really matters is what is happening between your heart and God’s.

At these times, simple songs which enable us to simply express our love and desire for God work best. I am reminded of Psalm 63: ‘God, you are my God, I pine for you; my heart thirsts for you, my body longs for you…Better your faithful love than life itself.’

So let’s get brutally honest in our times of worship. Let us bring everything with us, the good and the difficult, and lay it all down at the feet of the one who has loved us since the beginning of time.

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