A couple of months back I was wondering to myself what is the difference between spontaneous worship and prophetic worship? If there even was a difference. So in true Erica style I tapped the question into Google and found yet another pretty interesting video of Brian Johnson talking on the subject.
There is also another summary on this website http://www.worshipu.com/blog/spontaneous-worship-vs-prophetic-worship/ but here are the points that I caught from what Mr Johnson had to say about the matter.
When preparing a set list we need to prepare it like it depends on us and lead like it depends on God. One way of looking at spontaneous worship is being on holiday. When away you need little bit of planning before you go, but sometimes to get the best out of you time away its good to just go with the flow and be spontaneous.
Worship leaders are prophetic. They could hear from God at the time of preparing or even when leading. Choosing songs can create the moment. God is involved in the preparation and choosing of the songs. He wants our ideas. Someone could be given a word about a song being sung during that service and evoke a response. That is prophetic.
I totally agree and love hearing him say that music in it’s very nature is prophetic. It has the power through God to cause change and music opens the door to invisible realities whether evil or good. Music is basically a series of vibrations and God created the world all interconnected with sound, light and vibrations. Vibrations hold the world together to keep it’s shape. Music is prophetic. It creates. It can change a mood and an atmosphere.
Music can change an atmosphere. It can open the reality of God to people who might not necessarily know it, feel it or sense it. When you tap into something and you can feel yourself saying “woah”, that’s when God is breathing on what you are doing. And that’s a good thing. Creating an atmosphere where God’s voice can be heard is a very good thing.
A very important point he makes is that it is more about presenting our hearts than presenting our music. We have to learn as prophetic musicians and worship leaders to be funnels of what God is saying. A funnel from what God is saying to our own personal emotions and feelings. God isn’t against emotional responses to Him. Prophetic is more than an emotional response – it’s what God is saying.
The thing that causes people to question and bow and worship is more important than the music. There are many examples of God moving through worship. In Jericho when they marched around the wall they laid up a shout in worship and God moved! When David played before Saul God moved Saul and ministered to him. God uses music to be used in powerful powerful ways.
Our God is a gracious loving God who doesn’t judge our worship to Him. A lot of times in our own emotions we release. When we praise or play before the fact – things happen. There is a reaction because of that. Songs are a runway for that prophetic and tapping into what God has to say whether it is a spontaneous song of praise or a prophetic word.
Spontaneous worship can shift and turn into a holy moment. You can hit a nerve during a spontaneous time and then just know God is involved and speaking. We need to cultivate these moments and learn when they happen. We need to practise just as much this process from spontaneous to prophetic.
Good advice for worship leaders and musician is instead of getting intense about prophetic start out with your love for God. He doesn’t care what that expression looks like. If you have 10 minutes to pray spend 8 minutes of it in worship, adoration and paying attention before the Lord. You are going to get your best moments when you hearts are in a place that are turned towards God. When God does it naturally and it is not forced he will take it way further than you could on your own in your own power.
God is very much into giving us something and seeing what we will do with it. We aren’t robots. We are children of God.
Phil Driscoll (a worship musician) says: “I’m trying to keep my craft for the level that will allow me to flow with the Holy Spirit”. Learning for head knowledge is great but to be an effective prophetic worship leader it’s about learning how to hear what God is saying and then play it/sing it out. It is important to become one with your instrument. You don’t want your limits to limit the Holy Spirit. I really hope that a few of my worship instrumentalists get the chance to read this because I find this such an amazing, liberating thing and they really need to be encouraged that God wants to use their skills to minister to our church in beautiful ways they could never imagine.
We hear differently and we respond differently in worship. Pictures, daydreams, words, insights, feelings, allowing there to just be a flow. Learn how you hear and don’t try to hear like someone else. We need to learn what He is anointing in our lives. Sometimes talking isn’t as powerful as when we sing it. But sometimes it can be the other way round. Learn how to communicate the prophetic song put it into some kind of form so people can hear it and respond to it. Sadly this can mean a long time of trial and error.
Another great point is the challenge to be more concerned about the heart than being right. There are no limits with God. He will break every rule that you will make.
Music feeds the spirit. And it is a very wonderful privilege to put the lyric of God into people’s heart so that they can grasp it and remember it in their everyday lives.
It is just so exciting to be reminded that music is so so so powerful and God wants to use it in so many ways to move, change and minister to the church. Its up to us now to listen, proclaim and respond.