From the Stage to the Platform

Some people find that they are the most comfortable when on stage telling a story. They finally feel that they belong when they are performing and using their talents for the enjoyment of others. How do we take this and move it from the stage to the platform?

One easy way that I have found to take acting and use it during worship is to use it during special times of the year (i.e. Christmas or Easter). There is already so much literature and material out there for Christmas and Easter that is easy to find something that works well for you and your worship context.

Acting can also be a great way to involve your children more in the worship service. In working with the children on stories and plays that can be used in worship, you are not only helping the children to become leaders in worship but also you are also teaching them lessons and the stories that they are going to be presenting to the rest of the congregation.

Just as you can use acting to help include your children, it can also bring more of the church family to the platform to help lead worship. We all have people of many different backgrounds and talents. Using short plays and skits in worship is a great way to include your members in the worship service. There is a church in England who writes short skits for their worship services and then share them on their website for anyone to look at and use.

We have talked a little about ideas for acting in church, but what is acting? Acting is an activity in which a story is told by means of its enactment by an actor or actress who adopts a character in that story. Acting is telling a story by taking on the role of a person from that story. How can we not use this in worship? We have the greatest book of factual stories ever written — The Holy Bible. All of these stories deserve to be told as artfully as is possible. These are the stories of the people of God.

How do we balance wanting to do these stories justice and allowing our congregation to use them as worship. There is a danger in allowing these types of art forms to become all about the performance itself rather than the story it is telling and the art of worship that it brings to the table. How do we balance our desire for the performance to be its absolute best and remembering that it is for Christ we do this not for ourselves?

And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. (Colossians 3:17)
So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. 
(1 Corinthians 10:31)

The Bible is filled with verses telling us to do all we do in the name of Christ Jesus. It is easy to sit and read these verses and say ok I can do that. But how do we do this.

I recently read an article written by a Christian rapper from England named Seun Otukpe. In this article titled “Give it to God,” Seun talks about losing his father and losing sight of God. One section of this article stuck with me.

“But one day I opened the Scriptures: “You shall love the LORD with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might” (Matthew 22:37). Eventually I understood that loving God meant that I was to love him with everything that was in me. God doesn’t simply want a day or even an act — God wants to be cherished and glorified in everything I do.”

“God doesn’t simply want a day or even an act, God wants to be cherished and glorified in everything I do.”

What powerful words those are. God desires our all because he loves us and created us and he deserves so much more than we can give him. Later in the article Seun talks about how we have to pray to God and ask for his help in all we do it is only through Christ that we can give him our all. If we are not focused on Christ throughout the process of making art then it stops being worship and becomes an act.

If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. (James 1:5)

God gives to us generously and without reproach so we must do the same when we come to his house to worship his name.