The rhythm of our worship is from him to us, and then from us back to him. He gives his gifts, and together, we receive and extol them. We build one another up as we speak to one another in psalms, hymns, and spiritual songsLutheran Worship, page 6
Rhythm is a very interesting thing. It’s almost like air in that we don’t notice its presence, perhaps unless we find ourselves without it. Clocks tick, seasons change (eventually), and hearts beat. Rhythm is such a constant in our lives that perhaps is worth considering it intentionally.
The same is true when we consider the rhythms that pertain to worship. After all, worship is the most regular thing we do as Christians. As a worship planner and leader, it comes week after week with almost brutal regularity. And within each worship service we fill the room with songs and hymns crafted with exquisite rhythms and beats to accent lyric and melody. But the beauty in it falls within the constructs we find in how we understand our role in relation to God’s.
We often discuss and refer to worship with respect to our service, our offerings, our preferences, and our music. However, as written in the “Introduction” to Lutheran Worship, “The rhythm of our worship is from him to us, and then from us back to him. He gives his gifts, and together, we receive and extol them. We build one another up as we speak to one another in psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs” (LW, p. 6).
And what a wonderful rhythm that is, us echoing God’s grace, present long before we wake up Sunday morning; long before the mind and body are ready to acknowledge a necessity of worship; long before the death and resurrection of Christ… God’s gift of grace goes forth, we proclaim His goodness and faithfulness. It is the trumpet call to which we echo with Alleluia; God’s grace is the constant drum beat that hits on 1 + 3, and we clap on 2 + 4. It’s rhythm, present as the air we breathe. Inhale grace, exhale praise. YHWH.