Worship is defined as many things. “The feeling or expression of reverence and adoration” is one definition that sticks out to me. With this definition, there are many ways that I can choose to worship God, even if these ways are not what most people picture when they think of worshipping.
Enter Future Sound of Worship 6. At the front door a girl might greet you with a blue mohawk, covered in tattoos and piercings. Walking into the lobby you see tables filled with different glow toys, kandi bracelets being traded for canned food to help the needy, and the people that you see swarming around you are probably not a crowd that you would imagine to find under the roof of a church – but that’s exactly where you are. Continue walking and you find yourself in a room where the music is as loud as any club you might attend on a Friday night, but there’s something different. Girls with glowing hula-hoops are dancing to your left, and everyone else around you is dancing near the amazing light show that is taking place centered around the stage. The words “Future Sound of Worship 6” flash across the light display, and you stop to ask yourself… Worship? I’ve never seen worship like this before.
Many people have a very stereotypical image of what worship is ingrained in their minds. Maybe it’s a choir on a Sunday morning, or hymns being sung that have been passed down through the ages. Maybe it’s acoustic guitars and singable melodies, being performed in front of a group of people in pews. These are all great forms of worship, but they are not the only ones! Psalm 150:1-6 tells us “Hallelujah! Praise God in His holy house of worship, praise Him under the open skies; Praise Him for His acts of power, praise Him for His magnificent greatness; Praise with a blast on the trumpet, praise by strumming soft strings; Praise Him with castanets and dance, praise Him with banjo and flute; Praise Him with cymbals and a big bass drum, praise Him with fiddles and mandolin. Let every living, breathing creature praise God! Hallelujah!” At the Future Sound of Worship 6, we just happen to be praising Him with Electronic Dance Music.
The main difference that you notice at the Future Sound of Worship 6 (or any of the previous years) is that of the atmosphere. The people gathered here are doing more than just having a great time, and listening to great music. These people are showing reverence, love, and adoration to the One who made it possible for them to dance, sing, create, and even breathe! And they are expressing this reverence in a way that makes sense to them, that makes them able to connect on their own level – through Electronic Dance Music, and dancing to the Lord. This form of worship reaches through all generations, from young kids to grandparents attending the event and all of them connecting with God on their own level, regardless of age or any other affiliation. The adage PLUR (Peace, Love, Unity, Respect) is truly illustrated in this environment, as the focus is on true worship and love.
It might seem a little off the wall, to raise your hands in praise while the bass is thumping and the cymbals clanging. It might even seem crazy that someone would connect with God more at a worship service that is so seemingly unorthodox. I’m sure that church members from the 1800s would see a “normal” worship service of our generation to be crazy and unthinkable. I personally never imagined that my first experience feeling the presence of God would be walking out of a mosh pit at a hardcore show, but God reaches everyone on their own level, and is glorified and smiles on the praise that we give Him!
Experiencing God touch so many different people, all on their own level, was such a sight for these often-weary eyes to behold. This girl with the crazy blue hair and tattoos loved watching her parents, friends, and their children all worshipping God in their own ways and doing it together at the same time. My mom danced across the floor with her new glow toys, next to my friends who pulled off dance moves that I could never hope to master, along with young adults and teenagers from every background that you could imagine – all coming together in a spirit of love and worship. What more could you ask for?