IF OUR GENERATION HAD A SOUNDTRACK, WHAT WOULD IT SOUND LIKE?
Recently, I've spent a lot of time walking around cities, encapsulated by the sounds of familiar songs sung on the street. Buskers with guitars in hand and a microphone stood in front of them sing songs of praise in the middle of a high street. 'You're a good good Father' graces the ears of passing shoppers and an atmosphere of busyness is quickly changed by an undertone of worship. And it's happening in cities all over the UK.
In the next couple of blogs, you'll meet Tim and Katie, from 2 different cities, with the same heart to see cities changed through worship.
Hi! Who are you?
I'm Katie. I'm currently completing a discipleship internship at The Belfrey in York, having graduated from a Sound Production Masters last year at York University.
YOU'VE STARTED LEADING WORSHIP ON THE STREET. WHAT PROMPTED YOU TO DO THAT?
I wanted to start playing worship music on the street firstly to be obedient to God, as I had busking equipment and had felt called for a while before I began doing it regularly to play hopeful and uplifting worship and Christian music on the streets of York.
I believe it is a great way to share faith creatively because it interrupts people's everyday lives if they are open to it, allowing them to respond and engage when walking past to whatever extent they choose/ are open to. At the time I began playing worship music on the streets I had found worship music to be a very tangible hopeful influence in my life during very difficult times, and my prayer was that if someone walking past was struggling they might be able to find hope in the words being sung. I also believe strongly in the spiritual power of worshipping God openly, so believe putting this into practice can shift something in the spiritual atmosphere, creating more openness by declaring truth over places and people, explicitly inviting God and his kingdom into the city.
HOW DOES LEADING WORSHIP IN PUBLIC FEEL?
It is very exciting playing and singing about and to Jesus on the streets. It enables me to connect personally with God through worship, as well as see him meet with and encourage people through it, which is an amazing privilege. It was scary, to begin with, but I got over any self-consciousness and continue to do so by focusing on the love of Jesus, and out of an urgency to share this with others I am able to stand confident when declaring Jesus' sovereignty, power and beauty on the streets - All by God's grace and not my own strength as it is a miracle I was able to/am continuously able to overcome the fear of what people would think of me when busking!
DO YOU THINK WORSHIP AND EVANGELISM ARE LINKED? IF SO, HOW?
I think worship and evangelism are linked very closely. This is because worship is evangelism - when people witness true worship it is infectious. They see surrender, freedom and love for God, which is exactly where our faith finds its evangelistic power. If we aren't fully in love with God we cannot lead others into that same place, and worship (musically or otherwise) is an overflow of our love for him.
What's your soundtrack? And how can you contribute towards it?