Though this blog site is primarily associated with faith and the arts, I’ve had a good share of blog posts over the years delving into the finer points of worship. This should come as no surprise, since worship is one of my passions as well as one of my vocations.
With more than a hundred thousand clicks on these particular worship posts, I thought it might be good to give you a Top 10 List of the most popular articles associated with worship on this site. Perhaps you missed a few of these. If not, I hope you enjoy the rerun. Please feel free to share. (Click on the title to read the entire blog post.)
Number 10… Engaging the Imagination in Worship
Why did God give us imaginations? How does the imagination play a role in the worship experience? How can we—as worship leaders and planners and artists—incorporate elements which engage the imagination more in worship? This is one of the more important but least understood aspects of worship, in my opinion.
Number 9… Worship Lyrics and the Hidden Narcissism
Christian songwriters must not underestimate the weightiness of their role in the body of Christ. As it has been for centuries, personal theologies are formed as much by the lyrics we sing as the Bible we read. Words matter. Because words convey ideas. Are we as songwriters and worship leaders asking our congregations to sing lyrics that are ultimately unhealthy to their souls?
Number 8… Worship Unfettered
A heartwarming true story about how my twin four-year-old daughters taught me—and a room full of adults—what it is to worship with freedom and abandonment. “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 18:3 TNIV
Number 7… Heart Worship
To understand “heart worship,” we first need to define what we mean by the “heart.” More than just emotion, the heart encapsulates the mind and the will. And more than just sincerity, heart worship is grounded in Spirit and Truth. Worship, as in love, is more than just a feeling. It is an act of the will.
I asked a number of worship pastors, leaders, and artists around the country a simple question: “What is the difference between a worship concert and a worship service?” Some of the answers I received might surprise you, as it did me. What type of worship are you leading and experiencing at your church? Is it primarily a show, or is there more to it than that?
How many lead singers does it take to change a light bulb? One. The lead singer holds the bulb, and the world revolves around him. This blog was a repost from an article I wrote for Worship Musician magazine (I was a columnist for a few years with the magazine). Are you simply a lead singer or are you a leader of worship?
Number 4… Why Paint During Worship?
This post—with scores of continual shares and reposts—continues to be one of the most popular over time, and it makes sense to me. As more and more churches are incorporating live painting into their corporate worship experiences, it is good to have a firm theological and practical understanding of this worship expression. If you’re a visual artist, this is a must read.
Number 3… Karate Kid Worship
It is one thing to know something well enough to do it. It is a wholly different thing to know something well enough to teach it. Teaching worship—articulating conceptually as well as modeling personally the practice of worship—to your team will also make you a better worship leader. Plus, I really like the idea of Mr. Miyagi leading worship.
By far the most popular blog posts on my website, these two articles certainly touched a nerve throughout the worship community. As there have been a dozen reposts on this on different worship websites, chances are you might not have even read this on my blog but on someone else’s. From the post:
“The dirty little secret is that, in an effort to create more attractive services, some churches are actually looking more and more like the high school cafeteria. There is the Cool table, the Nerd table, the Jock table. No one wants the uncool guy or gal sitting at their table. At least, not on the worship team table.
What are we modeling when only “cool” people lead worship? What are we really valuing when we quietly retire those “mature” musicians? And what are we saying to the ever-growing older segments of our congregation when we put an unspoken age limit on those on stage? Are we valuing and serving and empowering them? Where do we model generational relationships and mentoring? How are we loving the people who are already in our midst? What are we really gaining when a church stops looking like the Church?”
Are you one of those maturing worship leaders? Or are you one of the younger ones? How is your church biblically modeling intergenerational community and biblical mentoring and leadership? If you are, these two posts are for you.