Worship the Lord with gladness; come before him with joyful songs. Psalms 100:2 NIV
There is something so very wonderful about going to church. Yes, we see old friends and meet new ones, but the gladness in our hearts is there because we are coming to worship our Creator, Savior, and Sustainer. We come in gratefulness and thankfulness to praise and sing joyful songs of the church. For some, they may be the melodies from a hymnal; for others, they may be contemporary songs projected on a screen, but all sung for the glory of God.
You notice today's verse doesn't limit this praise and worship to only Sunday morning. So, raise your beautiful God-given voices wherever you are, in the kitchen preparing breakfast, in your car (my favorite place), or walking down the sidewalk. Can't carry a tune in a bucket, no problem–God doesn't care; if it's from your heart, it's worship. Don't like singing alone, tune into a gospel radio station, and sing along. It's amazing how good your voice sounds when you join with others.
John Wesley gives some directions on singing found at the front of The United Methodist Hymnal. I'll share one of my favorites. "Sing lustly and with a good courage. Beware of singing as if you were half dead, or half asleep; but lift up your voices with strength. Be no more afraid of your voice now, nor more ashamed of it's being heard, than when you sung the songs of Satan."
God, we come before you in worship, offering our thanks for all your good gifts. We come with gladness and a song in our hearts. We come lifting our voices in praise to your glory. May our songs be joyful to your ears. Amen.
PS Note of personal experience, it's hard to get angry at that person who cuts you off in traffic when you're singing along to "How Great is Our God."