Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Setting the Faders

I have run sound at a couple of churches. I really enjoy the technical aspects of manipulating the sound board and the feeling of accomplishment when everything sounds perfect. It takes a good ear, a bit of knowledge, and a strong back-bone to do this though. You will NEVER please everyone in a church congregation with the sound of the band. Still, there is an art more than a science to setting the faders (volume controls) to get that mix just right. And when you get that perfect mix it doesn't matter what ANYBODY says to you, you KNOW it was right.

I think this might be the approach I need to be taking with regards to the Holy Spirit. For most of my life I have really thought of the Holy Spirit more of something external to me. My churchy friends always talked about having "Jesus in your heart" and "being led by the Holy Spirit." So, I think I just interpreted that as the Spirit being "out there somewhere." Even then, I don't think I can truly say I have had too many moments that were even Spirit led moments, much less Spirit Filled moments in my life.

What happens that keeps the Spirit from filling me? I now believe it's all of the other things around me (outside of me) that I turn up way too much. I push the faders up on the fun stuff, the cool stuff, as well as the selfish things. I don't think I fade the Spirit out really; I just leave that Spirit volume right where it is – static. No more, no less, just fine where you are Mr. Spirit. I also don't acknowledge that He is INSIDE me. If I would at least acknowledge that for real, I would realize that the slightest adjustment to the Spirit's volume would make a HUGE difference in the mix of my life.

The great thing about mixing a band with vocals, guitars, drums, bass, keys, etc. is that I get to decide what is most important at whatever point in the songs. I can bring up the lead guitar for the rockin' riff, or soften the background voices with a little reverb/delay to make the beautiful harmonies sing with perfection. I have realized now that I have that same control with how the Spirit works in my life for me. I can turn Him completely down; I can crank Him up to the max. I can drown Him out with career, movies, books, computers, even family and think all is good since I didn't change the Spirit's level (just all the other stuff). But, as it does with a sound mix, bringing everything up to the same level just makes it REALLY bad. Some things just need more volume than others. And I know the Spirit needs the focus.

Only with the Spirit turned up am I able to keep myself from abusing the beautiful gifts God gives me. Only then, filled with AND led by the Spirit will I overcome my selfish nature that always, always puts the gifts of God ahead of God Himself. It's time to crank up some Spirit volume and fade out some of the other junk on my board.


Sarah said...

Good stuff Mark!