Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Withered Hands

Just last week I had the most powerful yet brief encounter with God while I was at a nursing home. While Sarah and I were visiting a friend, we decided to get a cup of coffee from the activities room. They have this really neat automatic coffee machine that I would love to have at church. And of course the coffee is free.

Anyway, as we entered the activities room, there was a woman playing the piano and another woman sitting quietly in a wheel chair. The woman in the wheel chair was gently nodding her head to the rhythm of the music being played. In an instant I recognized the tune.

“Jesus, Jesus, Jesus… there’s just something… about that Name. Master, Savior, Jesus… let all heaven… and earth proclaim… Kings and kingdoms… will all pass away… but there’s something… about that Name.”

You may know the song. Now it’s been years since I’ve heard that song. Not because the song is no longer viable for worship and praise, but because so few play it anymore. That’s right, I’m used to the wailing guitar licks of Hillsong United or David Crowder.

Don’t get me wrong, I love our current praise and worship styles… BUT!

Somewhere in the mix of progressive church style to attract a younger more secular audience, we’ve lost something that can only now be found in Withered Hands.

Yup… that’s what I said, Withered Hands. As I stood waiting for my coffee my heart soared like an eagle and I gently began to sing along with the woman as she played. I really felt the Spirit of God show up in that room and my mind was filled with the beautiful memories of wonderful “old school” pianists that I grew up listening to and worshiping with as a child.

Maybe there will come a day when the Lord tells us; “Loud is sometimes too proud!” Maybe there will come a day when Withered Hands will play again. Maybe there will come a day when those who’ve tasted the gentle sweet flavor of piano worship will rise again.

Will there ever be a day when digital and loud are not the means of worship? I hope this millennial generation can once again experience the power of gentle Withered Hands that lead us into the presence of God... all without crescendo, bravado or Bono. Oh no!

I’m really missing some good gentle piano worship right about now.

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