Be Still Know
READ: Psalm 47:1-2
Come, everyone! Clap your hands! Shout to God with joyful praise! For the Lord Most High is awesome. He is the great King of all the earth.
Clapping is extremely eloquent. It uses no words but it conveys very powerful messages. There is all the difference in the world between clapping that is dutiful and polite, and clapping that is enthusiastic and noisy. They convey completely different messages. I am glad that the Bible encourages us to clap precisely because it takes us beyond words. However well-chosen and eloquent our speech it can never fully express how great, majestic and awesome our God is.
I was not brought up to make much use of my body in worship. Standing up, sitting down and shutting my eyes were the sum total of my bodily worship! I had an aunt who was high church and she did a lot of kneeling. Lifting hands or dancing in worship were well outside my experience until I was in my 20s. What mattered were the words. Of course the words do matter and we will always want to use them as we praise God but I am glad that we live in days when many have rediscovered the importance of using our bodies in worship.
Clapping, it seems to me, is a particularly appropriate way of worshipping God because, like singing, it binds us together with those around us. Our clap is small and makes little noise but when it’s combined with other clapping people there is a great body of united sound. If you have been to a sports match you will know how important clapping is. It can be used positively and negatively. A team will immediately know the difference between a slow hand clap and a clap of approval! God deserves the most enthusiastic and confident worship that we can bring and I am sure that it delights his heart when he hears the thunder of clapping.
QUESTION: Have you experienced clapping in worship, and if so what did it mean to you?
PRAYER: Loving God help us to worship you with our bodies, our minds and our spirits. Amen
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