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Songs of Worship with Sixteen Cities, Part 2

What advice would you give today’s young people?

It might sound cliché, but unless Christ is the center of your life, any other advice we could give would be pointless. We could gain the whole world, but if Jesus Christ is not the Lord of your life, then all our other pursuits fall short. Young people ask us how we “made it big,” or how to “become famous.” We simply tell them that our goal as a band is to make Jesus famous, not ourselves. And that the first step for all of us is surrendering our lives to Christ and following after Jesus. So our advice is to first and foremost decide if you will follow Jesus or not. And if your answer is “Yes” to following Christ, then everything you do should be based on giving Him glory.

Originally, you began a Wednesday morning worship and prayer ministry for students. How did you decide to take that step? What are some of the ways you saw God at work through it? Was it scary to take such a bold stand for Christ in front of your peers? What would you say to young people who are nervous about taking a stand for Jesus?

Making a stand for Christ is never easy. When we started boldly proclaiming Jesus in our high school, we were ridiculed, excluded from groups, judged, and sneered at. Yet we felt more fulfilled than ever before, because we were in the middle of God’s will for our lives. This side of Christ’s return, the world will always oppose Jesus (John 15:18), but as believers we are called to unashamedly worship Him and share the gospel.

You’re more of a worship band. How did you decide to take your music in that direction?

We’ve always been worshippers at heart, and leading others in song is where we come alive as a band. In the beginning of our ministry, we dabbled in making music that wasn’t always considered “worship music,” but never felt fulfilled. We love the Christian music industry, but consider ourselves worship leaders, not performers. So after several years of exploring the kind of music we should make, we felt called to focus our energy on creating worship music that could be a resource for the church, pointing people toward the greatness of God and His Word. Our newest album is our first true worship album, and is a representation of where our ministry is headed.

What is worship? Why is it so important?

Worship is our response to who God is, and what He’s done for us. We believe it is inherently important because God created us to worship Him. In Genesis, we see that God created man in His own image, in order that we might reflect His glory as His creation (Genesis 1:26). However, sin came into the picture and made us forget who we are and who God is, ultimately making us glorify ourselves instead of God. For that reason, worshipping God through song becomes a powerful way to remember the greatness of God, and respond to His love, grace, and holiness.

How can we really connect with God during times of worship? What is one way that worship has helped you to connect with God?

As a band, we believe one of the best ways to connect with God is through a healthy understanding of His Word. When our worship songs are rooted in Scripture, and we understand the magnitude of God’s truth, it gives us greater confidence as we sing songs to the Lord. We all feel closer to God when Bible verses come alive in a song, and speak directly to our hearts.

Emily

I love reading, writing, photography, and music. I started Generation Arise as a way to encourage young people to arise and shine forth the light of God!