The 17 days of the 2010 Vancouver Olympic Winter Games were some of the most riveting and captivating days in recent national memory. Like many of you, I sat on the edge of my seat, glued to the television, especially when a Canadian victory was in sight. While all the other sports were great, too, I was especially proud to see Canadian men and women medal in curling and hockey. Of course, THE moment of the games, for most Canadians, was that blink-of-an-eye when Sid the Kid scored the tie-breaking goal in the overtime period of the gold medal men’s hockey game. At that moment, the nation literally erupted. Any patriotic emotion that remained pent up during the previous 16 days welled up, out, and into the streets when we took gold at “our game”.
This got me thinking…how often does our worship of God erupt like that?
Lots of people would say, “We couldn’t do that; it’d be irreverent.”
So, let me see: we can get excited like we’ve never gotten excited over a hockey game, but we can’t get that excited about the God who rescues us from the pit of hell?
Sorry to put it so bluntly, but I’m not sure how else to explain the strangeness of it all. How stodgy is our image of God, when we think God wouldn’t be excited at our excitement over him?
God welcomes our unrestrained excitement.
We might have a hard time picturing this, depending on our background, but I think God exercised unrestrained excitement when he created the world. The narratives in Genesis are short and to the point, but I think when God “saw that it was very good”, he was very excited. The Israelites of old captured a good sense of what our delight in God can look like in Psalm 150 (NLT):
Praise the Lord!
Praise God in his sanctuary;
praise him in his mighty heaven!
Praise him for his mighty works;
praise his unequaled greatness!
Praise him with a blast of the ram’s horn;
praise him with the lyre and harp!
Praise him with the tambourine and dancing;
praise him with strings and flutes!
Praise him with a clash of cymbals;
praise him with loud clanging cymbals.
6 Let everything that breathes sing praises to the Lord!
Praise the Lord!
I want to encourage you to “get into” God with at least the same joy with which the Olympics captivated you. That’s what I’m challenging myself to do. After all, for worship leaders like me, it can be hard to “get into” God when you’re trying to remember what’s next in the corporate worship gathering. But my heart’s desire – for you and for me – is that we will find in God an even greater excitement than we found in that great moment last Sunday when Sidney Crosby became the new generation’s Paul Henderson.