I was musically and spiritually scarred by a particular worship song when we lived in Illinois. Weekly, the church organist would ratchet up the introduction for “Majesty”, pulling out all the stops on the organ (including bells). It felt like we should bring along our roller skates and breeze around the sanctuary. Sunday after Sunday there was a repeat performance. “Majesty” became “unmagestic”. Trivialized. The lyrics: “Majesty, Kingdom Authority, Flow from His throne, unto His own, His anthem raise!” could have been changed to “Majesty, the organist is in charge. The praise drains are stopped up because we are full of ourselves”.
A few years later, we relocated back to PA and were driving up to Bellefonte, PA for Bill to candidate at a church. Several months had passed since Bill had graduated seminary and the process of finding a new church was becoming arduous. Numerous resumes had been sent to churches with little response. At this point, we didn’t care anymore where we served, we just wanted to serve. Our standards were low.
It was a long haul to Bellefonte and we departed in darkness, well before dawn. However, in the sleep deprived hours of that trip we began to get silly. We made a list of warning signs if God didn’t want us to pursue this particular church in PA. #1 on the list was if they began the service by singing “Majesty”.
We finally arrived and were escorted to our seats. The service began and of course, the first song was “Majesty”. Bill and I could barely control the laughter that rolled around in both our hearts. It seemed God was writing on the sanctuary ceiling: “Beware! Beware! This congregation is a stinker!” After the service, we were interviewed by the Search Committee. We discovered that the church was deeply split over which version of the Bible they were going to use. That was their major issue and they were going to fight to the death over it. This definitely was not the church for us!
Who would have thought that the warning sign from God would be a worship song that had been treated sloppily and irreverently in an Illinois church? We could truly praise God’s protection from pursuing the church in Bellefonte, PA. “Majesty, worship His Majesty. Unto Jesus be all glory, honor and praise! Majesty, Kingdom Authority, Flow from His throne, unto His own, His anthem raise!” Thanks be to our Majestic God for protecting our vulnerable and discouraged hearts.
Isaiah 41:10 So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.