I was on tour with a fellow worship leader, driving through California. This was back in the days of burned CDs, and she had brought one labeled “War.”
When I asked about it, she explained that sometimes in life you need to blast some good worship music and sing along, and doing that can be the best way to fight in the unseen war that believers are batting. It immediately rang true, and we spent our drive declaring God’s reign in song and worshipping Jesus.
I believe that as leaders in the Church, we can sometimes become specific targets of the enemy. His strategy often is to come against influencers and shepherds, in order to weaken the whole group.
The Bible says, “Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith.” (1 Peter 5:8-9)
When my pastor was counseling my husband Trent and me before our wedding, he encouraged him to be extra aware on Saturdays, and try to show me grace if I’m ever in a mood or need extra support.
This is because it is a well-known phenomenon that strange, spiritually-charged things can occur in the lives of people who are about to minister to others in Jesus’ Name. For instance, Trent and I have learned to be on the alert and try not get in silly arguments on Saturday nights, so I can head into Sunday with a right heart more easily.
The enemy can attempt to distract us, discourage us, make us feel disqualified, tempt us with jealousy, and a myriad of other things. As worship leaders, we are called to be on the alert, and resist the enemy. Here are a couple ways we can do this.
1. DO NOT PARTNER WITH SIN.
Easy, right? Just kidding :) This isn’t something we can do in our own strength, but we are singing about the holiness of God, and we need to be doing it with right consciences. This isn’t about perfectionism, or earning anything - but let’s live the way we’ve been empowered to live.
If you have a sin struggle going on, make it your number one priority to spend serious time with Jesus and people who can help you, NOW. Get rid of it like your life depends on it. Sin of any kind - covetousness, greed, lust, fear and doubt, etc. - can open the door for the enemy to mess with your life.
Satan is scared of the calling you’ve received and what you can do in Christ. He’s watching for ways to try and stop you. “[W]e are not ignorant of his schemes.” (2 Corinthians 2:11) Ask the Lord to show you where sin has crept in, and help you kick it out.
2. WORSHIP WHEN NO ONE'S WATCHING.
Sometimes we can feel like we’ve heard every worship song a million times and we’ve been around the whole thing a little too closely. The awe in a song can sometimes wane when you chart it, teach it, rehearse it, repeat. Worship “stuff” is some of our jobs, and that’s a tricky position.
Don’t forget you’re invited to worship God when you’re by yourself. Time at home and in the car are huge opportunities to connect simply and humbly with the Lord, with no other agenda besides glorifying Him. If you don’t want to sing, just speak out loud. It doesn’t even have to be eloquent.
It can even start like that and then a song can rise up inside that you feel compelled to let out. Moments like that can be great reminders that worship isn’t a skill set, it’s a love language. A life-line.
Don’t wait until you FEEL like worshipping, or you’re expected to by a crowd. Develop a spirit inside of you that rises up with praise to God in the secret place, often. Especially when you sense you might be having some unseen opposition.
Worshipping Jesus confuses the enemy. It lessens his power in our lives and shuts the door on his evil plans. And it fills us with joy and peace. Worshipping God is our purpose, and leading from stage is just one aspect of it. Psalm 34 says, “I will extoll the Lord at all times; His praise will ever be on my lips.” Let’s commit to living our lives in worship - this is our way to victory in every battle.
Have you become aware of the unseen war? What have you learned to do in times of battle? Share in the comments!