Our Heart's Affection

Music can help us express the way we feel about God.
The heart at which [music] has been created is the heart that it affects.  Brian Houston, Founding pastor of Hillsong Church
On February 19, 1964, families across America huddled around a black-and-white television set, watching four young British men and their new band, The Beatles, change the world with their new
music. Not only did they take the attention off anyone else and put it on them, they won the affection of millions of teenagers around the world. Was it their haircuts? Their outfits? Their British accents? Well, yes...
 in part; but ultimately, it was their music.

It may have been 50 years ago, but that moment in music demonstrates how music can alter or express the way we feel and have an emotional impact. And it happens in lots of areas—we have feelings of patriotism when we sing our national anthem, and some of us get choked up whenever we sing Amazing Grace. Researchers have found that most people have little trouble identifying the basic emotional character of the music that they hear. No matter the culture, we can easily distinguish music that sounds happy and cheerful from music that sounds sad or brooding; however, the exact relationship between music and the emotions is more complex and is still an area of great debate and question.

The point is, that while we may not know why, most of us know and have experienced how music alters the way we move, think and feel. The bigger question for us then is how does God use music as it relates to our hearts? Maybe it is answered in this poem:

“For the common things of everyday
God gave man speech in the common way
For higher things men think and feel
God gave man poets, their words to reveal,
For the heights and depths no soul can reach
God gave man music, the soul’s own speech.”

READ and THINK… What does the Bible say?
Throughout this series, we’ve visited the Psalms, a collection of songs and prayers that express the range of human experience.

Question: Who gives victory and strength? Why does that lead to song?

Psalm 118:14-15 (New Living Translation)
14 The LORD is my strength and my song; he has given me victory. Songs of joy and victory are sung in the camp of the godly. 15The strong right arm of the Lord has done glorious things!

Knowledge is good, but there is a vast difference between “knowledge” (having the facts) and “wisdom” (applying those facts to life). We may amass knowledge, but without wisdom, our knowledge is useless. The wisest man who ever lived, Solomon, left us a legacy of written wisdom in Proverbs giving practical insights and guidelines for life.

Question: What happens as a result of a heart given to God? (Sidenote: Think about how this ties in with the multiply mindset we talked about last week and how when we give, God multiplies!

Proverbs 23:26 (New Living Translation)
My son, give me your heart and let your eyes delight in my ways.

LIVE… What will you do now?
Think of a recent time you turned on some music. What was happening at the time? Was it happiness so you wanted it on? Was it sadness and you were trying to find answers or comfort? How do you best communicate and express what’s really in your heart to God? If this is an area where you are stuck or not sure, what role can music play to open your heart up to God again?

David, and the other writers, in Psalms honestly poured out their true feelings, reflecting a dynamic, powerful, and life-changing friendship with God. The psalmists confessed their sins, expressed their doubts and fears, asked God for help in times of trouble, and offered Him praise and worship through song. Has this been your view of how worship music can work in your relationship with God? Why or why not?

If you had to list the top 3 things that have your hearts affection today, who or what would they be? What do the verses from today remind us of when it comes to this list?

PRAY… God, what do you want me to know and do?
Try singing this as your prayer today:
“Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound,
That saved a wretch like me,
I once was lost, but now am found,
Was blind, but now I see.”

Watch the VideoDigging Deeper with this week’s teaching pastor:
Click here to go deeper using the Life Group DVD by the teaching pastor or view the message, including bonus discussion questions.

Thank you for reading today’s LivingItOut! We encourage you to take it one step further by participating in a Daily Bible Reading plan. There are thousands of individual reading plans available and there is ONE that is just right for you!CLICK HERE to download a basic “Bible in a year” plan. Customizable reading plans available at Youversion.com or Biblegateway.com.
Jan Tanis
Jan Tanis

I'm Jan and I'm happy you stopped in. Please, leave a comment and follow along..

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