The Case for the Emotional Worship Leader

Zac HicksWorship Theology & Thought6 Comments

My Facebook feed blew up this morning with this intense and quite moving footage from a New Zealand wedding. They’re engaging in a sincere and powerful Haka ritual, and though I don’t understand a word of it, I think I get it…and I think you do, too. Our Love-Hate Relationship with Emotions Let’s face it. We evangelicals have a checkered past when it comes to emotions and worship. The Second Great Awakening–that early nineteenth century movement of westward-sweeping revivals–polarized the … Read More

Worship as Jesus Renewing His Wedding Vows

Zac HicksWorship Theology & Thought1 Comment

Metaphors are powerful, but this one’s more than a metaphor… Pastors from time to time are asked by older couples to join with them in what is most often a quaint yet meaningful ceremony. After decades of marriage together, committed husbands and wives sometimes desire to renew their wedding vows with one another. It’s a time for each to remember and recount what they’ve committed to, and to declare their intentions to remain faithful for the next set of years … Read More

New Album Coming in a Few Short Months!

Zac HicksUncategorizedLeave a Comment

God is always giving us a new song to sing. We’ve been writing and dreaming about this next handful of songs for the church for quite a while. In fact, a lot of the hardship that Coral Ridge has gone through over the last year has threatened to forestall if not shut down this project. But we, being both stubborn and confident in our Warrior-King Jesus’s power midst the fiery darts of the enemy, have pressed forward. And we want … Read More

Jesus Loves Me releases TODAY!

Zac HicksPersonal Stories & Testimonies, Songwriting1 Comment

Jesus Loves Me (Single) by Zac Hicks & Coral Ridge Worship A while back, Coral Ridge Music purposed to write kids’ songs for our local church that gave shape to the liturgical rhythms we hope to instill in our little ones. We wrote several songs that our kids currently sing, and we’re writing more. We’ve written songs of praise, songs of confession, and songs of grace and absolution. The first-fruits of this labor was a project tackled by our interns … Read More

Come Take a Week-Long Worship Class With Me – March 2016

Zac HicksWorship and Pastoral Ministry, Worship Theology & Thought1 Comment

Knox Seminary | AT704 | Worship Join me March 7-11 at Knox Seminary in Fort Lauderdale! This is an open invitation to worship leaders and pastors wanting to deepen their understanding of worship, liturgy, and pastoring. It’s tailor-made for people on the go who can’t commit to a semester’s worth of class but might be able to do some good reading ahead of time and then break away for a week. My hope is that pastors would see the value … Read More

Coral Ridge Music Releases – Chelsea Chen Live at Coral Ridge

Zac HicksConvergence of Old and New in Worship, History of Worship and Church MusicLeave a Comment

Friends, I’m so excited to let you know about the release of a live concert recording that our young organist, Chelsea Chen, performed last year on our 7,000-pipe Ruffatti organ. There’s a lot of off thinking out there when it comes to musical style in the church these days. One of those skewed ideas is that the pipe organ has no place in the modern church music paradigm. A year ago I engaged an experimental thought project about what the … Read More

The Difference Between Worshiping God and Worshiping Worship

Zac HicksWorship Theology & Thought2 Comments

(a reworked post from 2011) “Idolatry happens when we take good things and make them ultimate things.”  ~Tim Keller  The following comparisons are meant to be provocative and evocative. Even if stark statements like these generalize and absolutize a bit too much, one thing I have learned from reading the reformers is that the discipline of “dialectic,” as they called it (roughly, the practice of pitting ideas and statements against each other for the sake of disputation and dialogue), yields a … Read More

The Worship Pastor – Book Update #1

Zac HicksWorship and Pastoral Ministry4 Comments

(Read the initial post)(Read Update #2)  Book Update #1 Thank you all for your continued interest in the content of my book, The Worship Pastor. It’s scheduled to release in October 2016 (that’s NEXT year, folks). Some of you have been asking about its progress, so here’s a brief update. My manuscript was due on October 1, and I met that deadline…thankfully. The editor has been reading through it and passing it on to a few other readers for feedback. … Read More

Oceans, Rivers, and Other Two-Sided Biblical Images in Worship Songs

Zac HicksSongwriting6 Comments

Two Thirds of Our Globe (and worship songs, so it seems) It’s high tide for nautical themes in worship songs. “Oceans”-makers, Hillsong Worship, have another album out, OPEN HEAVEN / River Wild. The title track alludes to the outpouring of the Spirit prophesied in Joel and bridges the connection to what happens in worship. There are a couple of metaphors running through the song–prominent biblical imagery for the Holy Spirit: fire and rain. The Bridge gets to the center of … Read More

Join Me in January!

Zac HicksUncategorized1 Comment

I’d love to invite you to two different opportunities to connect and grow in worship leading and songwriting. I’ll be collaborating with some great institutions to do some important teaching and reflection on our craft, and I’d love for you to join me! The first will be an opportunity for a more intimate gathering, and the second will be one of the best mega-worship conferences on earth. Writing Songs for Today’s Church Trinity School for Ministry (Ambridge, PA) | January … Read More