Sometimes I make up songs that I sing to my cat. Her name is Beasty, and she has quite the voice herself. Yowling at my feet in the kitchen, she reminds me that we are not the only ones with voices on God’s much loved creation.
Sometimes Beasty sings for her supper, sometimes she is letting me know that she requires a lift onto a particularly high surface, and sometimes she sings simply because she can. She talks back to me, responding to my attempts to greet her in my own words or occasionally in a mimicked yowl!
Call and response. Something that all Anglicans are familiar with. Our liturgy is a shared worship, affirmation and language as we are in communion with each other and with God.
I notice that sometimes we do not have the same confidence as Beasty, who sings regardless of whether the sound is beautiful or not. I think what I have learned from her over the years is that confidence is key. If you want to get your message across you must speak with boldness and confidence.
We find encouragement from both John (1 John 5:14) and the Paul (Ephesians 3:11-13) about approaching God confidently in Christ.
When we are in worship together, let us speak confidently in our call and response. Let us sing with boldness and confidence, even when the choir is not there to lead us, because it is Christ who leads us in all things. He sang hymns with his disciples and spoke out in boldness and confidence.
I have spent time in many churches over the years and one thing I know is that even those who claim they cannot sing, or those who alone may sound a bit like a cat singing for its supper, find their voice taken up in the corporate worship and praise to God, and contribute to a joyful sound, in which God delights. Let us raise the roof of our building with the sound of praise and be not just a holy priesthood of believers, but also a choir for the Lord.