The phrase “sing a little louder” was ringing in my head this morning. I immediately thought of one of my favorite Christians songs, “Raise a Hallelujah” where it says “…sing a little louder, in the presence of the enemy”. But I realized that was not what this was about today.
I began to remember a true story I read once from a person who lived in Germany during the Holocaust. He said his church was located next to the railroad tracks that served as the pathway to the concentration camps. These camps were for the Jews taken prisoner and often being led, unknowing, to their death. Children were separated from parents and husbands from wives. Many never saw their family members again. He said he could remember being in their church services and the train passing by the church and those inside the church could hear the cries and screams of the Jewish prisoners. What did they do? Surely, they prayed. No! He said they would just “sing a little louder” to drown out the cries of those heading to their death.
I thought of the parallels today. How many churches are filled each Sunday with those who love God and proclaim His goodness, yet just “sing a little louder” and drown out the cries of those who are being carried away captive by the enemy. We have the cry of innocent aborted blood coming up from the ground of our nation. Do we just sing a little louder? We have rising rates of children and adults tormented by depression, anxiety, and thoughts of suicide. Do we just sing a little louder? We have schools being indoctrinated with doctrines of demons, drag queens, support for gender realignment and critical race theory. Do we just sing a little louder? In our own county, we have teen substance addiction and use on the rise. Do we just sing a little louder as if our noise will drown out the pain and shame of the families dealing with these issues? We leave our comfortable places of worship and quickly forget. Surely someone will take care of these problems. So, we continue to just sing a little louder oblivious of the pain of so many.
Do we ever wonder why some carry the burden of that pain for others, while many do not? Do we ever ask God, “Why Me”? Why do I have to care? Why can’t I just live my nice, comfortable, middle-class life? After all, someone will surely take care of it. But as this church in Germany sang their worship just a little louder, over 6 million Jews were violently and heinously destroyed. 6 million destinies were cut short while some just sang a little louder. How could they not have done something? How could they have just continued singing? Why don’t we answer that question?
What we are seeing happen in our nation is not about politics, it is about the war between two kingdoms: the kingdom of darkness and the Kingdom of God. While we are singing our worship louder each week and while we are gathering in huge numbers in our conferences or even our weekly gatherings, there are those living among us who are screaming out for freedom from the clutches of darkness and hoping someone will hear and someone will have the power to deliver them and set them free. So, what do we do? We continue to offer an impotent religion that finds its life support in its programs, conferences, and entertainment for those who just come and continue to “sing a little louder.”
But it is not hopeless because there are some who are hearing the cries and hearing the call to be the Ekklesia, the church that Jesus built where the powers of darkness will not prevail. There are some who, regardless of their age, social status, economic status or education, are hearing the cries and they refuse to drown them out with apathy, distraction or complacency. We must search out these who refuse to pretend that all is good or that someone else will take care of it.
We have an election coming up in a few weeks and it is our responsibility to reveal those who refuse to continue singing louder so they don’t have to deal with the real issues. We must know those who will sacrifice their own security for the benefit of a nation that is darker than ever in its history. There are those who are only after power over the people and there are those who are only after power for the people. These must be clear to us and we must support those who want to serve and not be served and benefited by power and position. We must do our part. When we do not vote or when we do not do our due diligence for election candidates, we are just continuing to “sing a little louder” as if our song will eliminate the problems.
Our song is a song of victory and not a coverup for the reality of where we are.
This is our song! This is our victory cry!
I raise a hallelujah, in the presence of my enemies
I raise a hallelujah, louder than the unbelief
I raise a hallelujah, my weapon is a melody
I raise a hallelujah, heaven comes to fight for me
I’m gonna sing, in the middle of the storm
Louder and louder, you’re gonna hear my praises roar
Up from the ashes, hope will arise
Death is defeated, the King is alive!
ongwriters: Jonathan David Helser, Melissa Helser, Jake Stevens, Molly Kate Skaggs.