Singing is powerful. I never realised how powerful it is until I was ill three years ago. The only way to battle the darkness that sometimes threatened to engulf me was to sing. And not just any old song: hymns, choruses, spiritual songs and Psalms were what I sang. There is a well-known Christian chorus:
All hail the Lamb, enthroned on high, His praise shall be our battle cry….
which I had never taken it seriously before, just thought it was an emotional, not very substantial song. But it’s real. A follower of Jesus really can do battle through praise. I battled the last part of my illness for four months by praising God, yep just by singing. And at the end of that four months He healed me from the illness.
Even now, if I’m having a bad day or if life feels overwhelming, I know that by listening to worship songs (or better yet, singing), hope and joy begin to rise again in me. Some of my favourite verses are from Psalm 40 because they describe so well how God rescued me out of the darkness of sin and illness, giving me a new song to sing:
I waited patiently for the Lord to help me, and He turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the pit of despair, out of the mud and the mire. He set my feet on solid ground and steadied me as I walked along. He has given me a new song to sing, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see what He has done and be amazed. They will put their trust in the Lord.