This summer from June 20-24, I was volunteering at a local vacation Bible school on the worship team. It was Friday, the final day. We were dancing to the song “Graves Into Gardens.” You probably know the lyrics:
You turn mourning to dancing
You give beauty for ashes
You turn shame into glory
You’re the only One who can!
You turn graves into gardens
You turn bones into armies
You turn seas into highways
You’re the only One who can!
While worshiping, I had this interesting moment. It felt like time slowed down.
I looked out at the large crowd of kids worshiping with joy and energy, with pure simplicity. I sensed the intensity of God’s heart for these children. I received a fleeting glimpse of his deep, ferocious love for them.
Suddenly, randomly, my thoughts turned to the unborn, to all the babies aborted before they could take a breath, before they could let out a cry, before they could learn how to worship.
The moment ended and we finished our set. Later as I was stepping off the stage, I heard someone say, Did you hear the news? Roe was just overturned!
I’ll never forget that feeling. So surreal. That experience I had on stage? It wasn’t at all random. Heaven was rejoicing. The death decree over our nation was officially, finally broken after 50 years. A jubilee.
How incredible that it was the day I happened to be dancing and worshiping, singing to the Lord Almighty who truly turns graves into gardens.
A Worship Movement
A massive worship movement is mounting. Worship is what we’re made for. It’s in our nature to serve someone or something. It’s where we find our strength and identity — for better or worse.
Worship was the end goal of the exodus. The Israelites were groaning under the weight of slavery in Egypt. They were laboring and suffering, serving the wrong master.
When we fail to worship the one true King, we become enslaved to lesser things.
Interestingly, Moses was born under the conditions of a death decree. It was a time when the people of God were multiplying in the land, despite their growing oppression. Their size and strength made Pharaoh fearful.
So the Egyptian king told the Hebrew midwives that all the baby boys were to be aborted at birth. But these God-fearing women knew better. Refusing to obey evil orders, they let them live.
Along came Moses, who years later would emerge as the nation’s deliverer.
Then the Lord said to Moses, “Go to Pharaoh and say to him, ‘This is what the Lord says: Let my people go, so that they may worship me.Exodus 8:1 NIV
The exodus wasn’t easy. It took terrifying signs and wonders from God’s hand. It was an epic showdown, an exposure of Egypt’s false gods against the Lord’s unstoppable power.
Idolatry leads to slavery. It happens when we misplace our worship. Because we cannot not worship. When we remove God from our life, our country, our schools, our family — the results are catastrophic.
Something has to fill that vacuum. That something is often the “self.” Think about the phrase “my body, my choice.” The root focus is “me.”
Since the Roe v. Wade decision in 1973, an estimated 63 million babies have been killed. An entire generation, gone. It’s a tragedy … a genocide.
I’m not writing this article to condemn anyone. If you’ve been involved in an abortion, there is healing and forgiveness available in Jesus. His blood speaks a better word.
If you’re pro-abortion, please know you can change your mind. It’s an emotionally charged topic shrouded in shame, guilt, fear, and deception.
God will continue to change mindsets and hearts on this topic. That’s why Dr. Michael Brown calls for Christ followers to raise our voices:
I agree. This article is my attempt at a start.
I want to call myself and others higher, to direct us away from our focus on self — our careers, our convenience, our money, etc. — and fix our eyes on something greater: God’s kingdom and his righteousness.
Repentance is our first step. We’ve all sinned and fallen short of God’s glorious standards (see Romans 8).
The overturning of Roe is a sign of God’s great mercy on our nation. He has empowered prayer warriors, revivalists, and powerful movements that have persevered over the long haul to see this giant fall.
Yet we know the battle for life continues at the state level — and, even more important, at the heart level.
It’s only in the last year that God has opened my eyes to the gravity of this injustice. It’s also no coincidence he’s been teaching me about the centrality of worship.
Engaging in idolatry means we open the door to deception, harm, and demonic activity. We don’t have an option to maintain neutrality. Ultimately, we must choose between darkness or light, death or life. Jesus said:
Abortion is antithetical to abundant life.
Worship as a Weapon
The spiritual battle is real. Worship is a weapon of our warfare. Scripture sets this precedent.
We see praise as a warfare strategy when Judah (which means praise) would go first in battle. Recall Paul and Silas in prison. As they’re praying and praising the Lord, all the prisoners’ chains fall off and the doors fly open!
Read all of Psalm 149. Here’s verse 6:
“May the praise of God be in their mouths and a double-edged sword in their hands.”Psalm 148:6 NIV
Ruth Ward Heflin in her book “Glory” outlines a simple progression: “Praise…until the spirit of worship comes. Worship…until the glory comes. Then…stand in the glory!”
Heflin explains that glory is the atmosphere of heaven. It’s weighty, holy. When God manifests his presence, anything is possible. She also explains how dancing before the Lord “brings an anointing that feeds nations the outpouring of the Holy Ghost.”
As I’ve learned to worship through dance over the last year, I truly believe it’s a key warfare strategy that unlocks freedom, healing, and breakthrough — not only for the one worshiping, but also for cities, regions, and nations.
When David danced with all his might, he fed his nation. When Israel crossed the Red Sea, the nation sang and danced, boasting in the Lord’s victory.
Where are the undignified Davids who will dance with all their might, contending for a great outpouring that will bring a nation back to life?
America needs a great outpouring, and I believe it’s just beginning. We all have a part to play.
The Lord is inviting us to repent, to examine our hearts and lay down our idols. In the process, he will turn our mourning into dancing and our tears into triumph. He will bring resurrection life. He will set the captives free.
Let this be written for a future generation,Psalm 102:18-20 NIV
that a people not yet created may praise the Lord:
“The Lord looked down from his sanctuary on high,
from heaven he viewed the earth,
to hear the groans of the prisoners
and release those condemned to death.”
I hear him saying: Let my people go. Let the children live.
For those who want to go deeper, here are a few resources: