Why Dudes Don’t Sing

One of the perpetual problems I’ve heard about in multiple churches is that the men won’t sing. I’m grateful at the church I serve that overall, the men do join in the singing, and we have some men that sing VERY loudly (you know who you are!). Yet the question has often been asked, why don’t the men sing? Why is it so hard to get men involved in church? I’ve heard that men aren’t emotional and too many of the songs we sing are too “lovey-dovey” for men to feel comfortable singing. I’ve even heard a comedian say “let me sing about Jesus watching the game with me.”

The problem with this is that it doesn’t allow men to stand up and be the men we’re called to be. Men are supposed to be leading their families and this includes in the way their family sings and worships God together. Men are supposed to be emotional beings (no, that doesn’t mean we cry at every movie we watch, but that doesn’t mean we should be afraid to cry). I worry that many men today attempt to put on a tough guy facade or a hipster/too-cool-for-this vibe that doesn’t allow them to worship God with all they are and all they have.

Throughout my life I’ve had to work through how I can worship God with my whole being, including my body, voice and mind. This past week at church we sang Chris Tomlin’s song “Lay Me Down” which has the line “with my hands, lifted high.” As I introduced the song, I told the congregation it was their opportunity to raise their hands, and most people did and seemed to enjoy it. I know there were some people that REALLY didn’t like it, but they haven’t talked to me yet! It is a joy to sing praises to God in a place where people can be free to express themselves with their bodies! Dancing isn’t just a mark of women, David, whose life movie would probably look something like the movie 300, danced like a mad man! I hope and pray we continue to have more men like David who are willing to show physical displays of worship to God including: raising your hands, dancing, kneeling, bowing, standing in awe, singing and many more. What are some ways you’ve encouraged people to be more engaged at the church you attend?

Why You Should Raise Your Hands During Worship

Relevant recently posted an article titled ‘Should I Raise My Hands in Worship?’ It did a good job of taking the focus off of music being the only form of worship, but I still have some concerns with the overall direction the article took. As I read the Bible, I see an abundance of physical expressions that are to accompany our worship – and particularly worship through song. The biggest book the in Bible is a book about songs of praise to God.

Borrowing heavily from Bob Kauflin’s book Worship Matters (worth reading if you haven’t already), he begins by saying, “Biblical praise is normally expressed, spoken, and observable. That’s why David says, “My heart is steadfast, O God! I will sing and make melody with all my being!” (Psalm 108:1)” (page 170) Then on the very next page, Bob goes on to say

God created our bodies to glorify him (1 Corinthians 6:20)… Various physical actions can bring God glory, including clapping, singing, bowing, kneeling, lifting hands, shouting, playing instruments, dancing, and standing in awe (Psalm 47:1, 6; Exodus 12:27; Psalm 95:6; 134:2; 33:1; 150:3-4; 33:8)… The crucial question is this: Is there any physical expression of worship that God has given us in Scripture that I’ve never displayed? And if so, why?

– Bob Kauflin, Worship Matters. 171

These are some very important questions to ask about yourself as you worship at your church on a regular basis. Worshipping isn’t something we do only on Sunday morning, but there is something significant about our coming together as a body (Hebrews 10:25). The Bible doesn’t give an out if you aren’t an expressive person, or if it makes you feel weird, or if you’re not used to it. It’s not about you, it’s about the audience of one, who has revealed to us how we can worship Him. So what are some things you need to do in order to better worship Christ with your body?

Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name;
worship the Lord in the splendor of holiness.

-Psalm 29:2