Bruce Benedict of Cardiphonia (a great site on worship, liturgy, and the synthesis of the traditional and the modern) offers a full description of these 6 fundamentals that I find right on target…and convicting. Here’s a summary: 1. Worship Leaders must cultivate a life of faith.2. Worship Leaders are called to be shepherds and guardians.3. Worship Leaders are called to be great musicians.4. Worship Leaders are called to be administrators.5. Worship Leaders are called to be liturgists.6. Worship Leaders are … Read More
In the last few years, God has brought on a strong urge think about mentoring those younger than myself. In fact, I’ve got five working relationships with young men at various ages and stages of interest. I’m teaching guitar lessons to a 10-year-old and an 12-year-old. I’ve been incorporating another young man, about 14, into our worship band. I just had lunch the other day with an 18-year-old, encouraging him to pursue the high calling of pastoring people through worship, and I’ve brought in another 18-year-old on board to expand the ministry of modern worship to our students and children. I’ve begun a long-distance relationship with a 20-something on the west coast with semi-regular phone calls and prayer. For each of them, there’s no magic formula. There’s not even a game plan. In fact, I’ve adopted a methodology I largely call “absorption mentoring.”
I turned 30 a few months ago, so I’m actually at the beginning point of stepping out of this problem. But it still happens to me. People wonder what “that sixteen-year-old” is doing up front leading music or liturgy, or preaching a sermon. I’ve received so many comments over the years on how young I look that I’ve become inoculated to them. I’ve developed 100% immunity to being embarrassed or offended when people tell me I look like I just got my driver’s license. It’s even become a fun joke around church, such that when I became an ordained minister, they put my picture up among those of the other elders…only it wasn’t me; it was a doctored picture of Doogie Howser (no pun intended)!
Last night, after our Maundy Thursday Family Service, when almost everyone was gone, I noticed that the light in our Senior Pastor’s office was on. Don Sweeting will be leaving us in a few short weeks for a new call as President of Reformed Theological Seminary in Orlando, and I dearly love the man, so it was a peaceful opportunity to let him know how much I appreciate him and will miss him. Of course, Don and I have never been prone to brief conversations because we’re always rabbit trailing into discussions on theology, worship, and philosophy of ministry. Don mentioned something that resonated with me. He said something to the effect of, “Pastors that complain about the extra work load during Holy Week and Easter don’t realize what a blessing we have.”
Worship Leader Magazine’s latest issue (a GREAT issue, by the way) featured an interview with Hughes Oliphant Old (worship leaders should know this name) by Reggie Kidd. In a brief, two-page span, Kidd probed Old’s brain on the subject of what Paul means in Ephesians 5:19 and Colossians 3:16 when he refers to “psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs.” This is an ongoing and important exegetical dialogue that should be entered into by every worship leader. One of the questions and answers hit the subject that haunts every worship leader…whether or not songs should tie to the sermon. This is a perennial struggle
As all the evangelical pointers continue to signal a continued shift toward worship expressions which are more rooted and liturgical, I’ve noticed an increased re-engagement with that archaic piece of print material known as the “order of worship.” Others call it an “order of service,” a “printed liturgy,” or simply a “bulletin.” Screens in worship have served well many functions, but one thing they cannot get away from is that the words and ideas they project are fleeting. You can’t (usually) know what’s coming next in a worship service with screens. You can’t meditate on any portion of the worship service when the screens constantly change text before you. You can’t take a screen home with you for reflection.
This Sunday is Reformation Sunday—a time when Protestants thank God for how He refined and revived the Church in the sixteenth century. Being Presbyterian, we’re wedding the celebration of the Reformation with the 500th anniversary year of the birthday of John Calvin. Our unique slant on acknowledging Calvin is by stepping back several centuries and worshiping with a liturgy straight out of Calvin’s Geneva. We’re going instrument-less and hymn-less. We’re singing a capella psalms. We’re comparing the Genevan liturgy to … Read More