Raise Your Voice - Jamie Wong
That, you see, is a generational echo. It is when the voices of a rising generation echo the convictions of the generations before.
I’ve been singing on worship teams since the age of 11. I unwittingly auditioned for the worship team of our local Baptist church one evening when I was asked to sing at the church gala. I think it may have been a church birthday celebration, and I think each family was expected to present an item. All I know for certain is that by the time I was done singing a very tentative and only just-in-tune rendition of “My Heart Will Go On” (which was so totally cool back then), I was given a free pass to join the worship team. In hindsight, I’m pretty sure they wanted to lower the median age of the worship team to be a little more youthful, but regardless of the reason, I am truly grateful that I have grown up with worship in my life.
I’ve heard it said that being a worship leader, backing vocalist or musician at church is comparable to religious rock-stardom. But from personal experience, I can assure you that worshipping onstage merely amplifies one’s fallibility more than fame. It’s easy to pick out a singer who is not convinced of the words they are singing, and onstage worshippers are held accountable to the masses. As a vocalist, the voice that comes from within carries an inflection of emotion that is near impossible to mask. With every note, it reveals disappointments and fears as much as victories and dreams.
One thing I’ve learned from my 20-something years on the worship team is that you have to seek a personal revelation in order to sing with conviction. A conviction demands to be heard, and the crescendo of a mighty roar of voices is evidence of this. I have had the privilege of leading worship in many different environments - from audiences of one to thousands. The most unforgettable moments of worship that I’ve experienced have been those where the voices of the congregation rose louder than any amplifier or PA system. These were the moments where the mantle of leadership transferred from the stage to the seats and the people that I had been positioned to lead were leading me with their conviction. I remember one such moment with crystal clarity. On the final night of a Get Smart Youth conference, the preacher put out a call to empower youth to stand up for what they believed in. At that moment, he cued in the worship team. As we started to sing the line, “There’s an army rising up”, I realised that I was witnessing something truly significant. The room erupted with the sound of a generation. Each person and their unshakeable certainty contributing to a choir of purpose that no recording could ever truly capture. From that platform, mere feet off the ground, I was humbled to my knees as I witnessed the roar of a generation rising to proclaiming their purpose with an honest conviction.
That, you see, is a generational echo. It is when the voices of a rising generation echo the convictions of the generations before. Through the impact of Legacy, we are changing the world around us, one generation at a time. So now, I have this conviction every time I have the opportunity to lead worship - an echo starts with a voice. For as long as this season is mine to influence, I will bring a sound that not only changes my generation, but encourages others to change theirs too. What is your voice? What is your conviction? May your voice not only be one of conviction, but one that leads others to a revelation of their conviction too.
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