6728580615_98c4f1c23b_zSummer is a bittersweet time for people in ministry.

It’s nice to have the college students back. It’s nice to get a slight breather from the crazy Fall & Spring seasons.

While it’s a nice time to rest, if you’re not careful the Fall will be upon you in full force and you’ll be unprepared.

That’s why it’s so important to prepare now for the impact you want to have then.

I’ve decided to do a two part podcast series on this idea. This first episode will revolve around my thinking regarding brand new plans for this fall.

The next episode (in a couple months) will be a follow up to how it all worked.

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worship_contemporary2Modern church goers have always used the phrase “contemporary worship” as a way to appeal to a new generation.

It has always been a value.

But I’m wondering if it has lost its meaning and is costing us what true, Biblical, corporate worship should be.

Since my days of being a young child, I’ve been raised in “contemporary” worship.

New songs, upbeat music, and exuberant participation from the congregation in the forms of singing, hand-raising, dancing, and shouting is all I’ve known.

Matter of fact, bringing your tambourines, flags, and banners to church was a weekly occurrence for some (not me, of course).

It’s what we’ve prided ourselves on. It’s what I lead every week. We have contemporary worship. It’s not dead religion or ritual.

But is our contemporary worship becoming a dead ritual?

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5020082786_c1aa6cc68c_zToday’s topic is something, I believe, doesn’t get talked about a lot – and that’s how to teach your congregation to worship.

We are in a day in age where the completely unchurched are coming to our churches.

We can’t assume they will understand worship, let alone know how to worship.

We must teach them.

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instruments-microphone-51094I love music. Without a doubt, the combination of lyric and melody is one of my favorite art forms in all the world.

But I’ve had a lingering question that has been in my mind as it relates to corporate worship.

Are we singing too many songs? And does the singing of songs eventually have an adverse effect on our hearts? Continue Reading…

mentor-peddesThere’s something we can’t be reminded enough of as worship leaders.

What is it? It’s keeping it real. Coming back to the basics. Keeping our hearts focused on Christ.

I can’t think of a better person to talk to than Dave Pedde, president and founder of Sanctus School for Worshipers.

Dave was one of my professors at North Central University and was a massive influence on my worship leading.

In this interview we talk about worship education, being an authentic worshiper and leader, worship leading disciplines, and approaching corporate worship with a fresh perspective.

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13607862963_dca7891969_zI can count on one hand the amount of weekends in the last 5 years where I simply “attended” church with my family.

I’m always on the worship team, leading people.

And I love it. I wouldn’t have it any other way. But occasionally it’s refreshing to simply come and worship.

The only problem is I have a hard time worshiping. I’d rather judge, critique, compare, and find my identity in the fact that I’m better than the worship leader I’m watching.

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brian-jennSpontaneous and prophetic worship can be a spooky topic.

But knowing how to listen to what God is doing in the moment and pastoring people through that is such an important part of corporate worship.

Jenn Johnson and I talk about this and so much more in this week’s podcast. It was such an honor to talk with Jenn as I’ve been a massive fan of her and Brian’s ministry over the years.

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Hillsong_United_3_1139x541There’s a popular article floating around about the current state of modern worship.

Many of the points I would agree with. I’m thankful that Jamie is addressing these hard questions and fostering some great conversations.

But at the same time, I also want to present a perspective that I feel is missing.

None of this is new. None of these problems are new.

I don’t believe we are headed for a worship crash because these conversations and wars have been going on since the church has worshiped together in corporate fashion.

No, we are not headed for a crash. We are going to be OK.

But there is still a major problem.

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kid-lifting-barbellThere’s a passage in Scripture that I’ve loved and questioned at the same time.

It’s a verse we use a lot in ministry. That verse is 2 Corinthians 12:8-10:

“But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”

I’ve always wondered – do I intentionally pursue weakness so that Christ’s power may be displayed?

Should I ignore self improvement because it will show the glory of Christ more?

Does God have issues with talent?

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Michael OlsonWe know worship is more than music.

Leading worship is more than leading songs. But what is the missing ingredient?

It’s shepherding. Through our song choice, speaking, leading, and behind the scenes work, we are shepherding our congregation in their pursuit of Jesus.

In this episode, I talk with Michael Olson about how he does this at Christ’s Church of the Valley, a 20,000+ member church in Phoenix, Arizona.

Michael was a recording artist with Rocketown Records, Michael W Smith’s touring drummer for 6 years, and now a worship leader at Christ’s Church of the Valley. An incredible songwriter, musician, and worship leader.

The conversation flows in a lot of interesting directions. Don’t miss it!

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