A Call To Prayer This Sunday

November 02, 2016

A PRAYER FOR OUR NATION - 20 INCHES TO MERCY

Spurred on and inspired by Louie's prayer from Worship Night In America, we are inviting EVERY church across the nation to carve out a moment in your services this coming Sunday to invite your church into a posture to pray for their family, community and nation in light of the upcoming election. Louie Giglio led a timely and impactful moment that reminds us that the healing of our nation rests on the prayers of God's people. To get an idea of what that moment might look like, watch the video below. 

 

 

2 Chronicles 7:14
If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.

1 Timothy 2:1-2
I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.

 

KYRIE ELEISON

Chris Tomlin, Matt Maher, and Matt Redman rewrote the ancient prayer, Kyrie Eleison (which means "Lord Have Mercy"), in response to the unrest and uncertainty of today. This historical phrase is the first part and simplest form of the 5th century Jesus Prayer. The ancient church would sing a hymn of praise and then read The Jesus Prayer to 'reset' and to say once again "Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner." This prayer is taken from Luke 18:10-14. 

Download a free chart, view the performance, and watch the New Song Cafe video below.

 

Kyrie Eleison - Chris Tomlin

 

 

WORSHIP NIGHT IN AMERICA

This past Tuesday a powerful moment of unity occurred in over 400 cinemas and churches across the United States. Presented by Chris Tomlin, 'WORSHIP NIGHT IN AMERICA: An Evening of Unity and Prayer for our Country' provided an opportunity for the Church to gather, pray and lift up the name of Jesus.

-The Worship Together Team

So, you’ve been playing the same songs over and over again and there comes a point when even the songs that your congregation loves are starting to feel over-played. The words have come out of your mouth so many times that they’ve started to lose their meaning – for both the worship leaders and those in the congregation. You know when it’s happening. You look out at the congregation and their lips are moving but their eyes are glazed over. You’re strumming chords and singing, but it’s all just muscle memory.

Think about the first time you listen to any song – that’s the time you’re most aware of the lyrics. You’re intently listening to see what the song is about (and to see if you like it). Then you start to hear it more and more and soon enough you’re singing along to every word when it comes on the radio. Flash forward and those words have lost their meaning again. So you listen to a new song. And that’s what it’s like with worship music as well. Contrarily, the congregation usually needs to hear the song a couple times before they can fully sing along and mean the words that are coming out of their mouths.

But how do you make that jump?

1. Know your audience: You need to know what (or who) you’re working with. Pay attention to how they may respond to a new tune, or if a song may be overused and is losing its connection. If it’s a younger crowd, they may already be hip enough to know those new songs you’re adding to the set list. But the more diverse and/or older an audience, the more you may need to spoon feed them the new material. If you’re introducing a hymn, however, the opposite may be true

2. Don’t overload: Generally, don’t add more than one new song in a service. It’s just going to be more than everyone can chew. On the same note, don’t do a new song every week or even every other week. You want to keep things fresh, but you don’t want to over-work their minds with new material – remember they still have a sermon that they need to be meditating on as well.

3. Pick a technique: There are a couple schools of thought on how to add in those new songs. Some say to add in only the chorus one week and then do the whole song in its entirety the next. (This can easily be done when there’s one song that uses the same chord progression as the new one). Others say to do the whole song so that the crowd can get a sense of what the song is about and be able to apply the words to their lives better. Some worship leaders teach the congregation the new material by using a “repeat after me” type technique. Use one technique or use all of them. Do whatever works for you, your team and your church.

So, while introducing new material may feel a bit awkward when the congregation is just staring back at you not even pretending to be mouthing the words, it’s still an important aspect of worship. It looks like they aren’t participating, but many times they’re actually worshiping God in the purist way – by letting the words resonate in their hearts and meditating on it in their minds.

In this blog, Worship Together intern, Andrew Holt, gives his feedback on the importance of growing student worship ministries. He is involved with our Camp Electric worship team and has years of experience in worship ministries, specifically with youth.

I have lead worship for student ministry in different capacities for almost six years, and it has become one of my favorite ministries to be a part of. One of the trickiest parts of building a strong student worship team is navigating through all the challenging parts of being a teenager in hopes to build something powerful and game changing for your entire church.  Here are 5 key practices that I believe can lead to exactly that.


1…Re-define student worship as a part of the overall worship ministry
       

A challenge that keeps many student worship teams from seeing huge success is their separation from the overall worship ministry of the church. The leadership often comes from within the student ministries’ leadership and not the worship ministries’. If you are a worship pastor, I would encourage you to get involved with your student worship leaders and begin to pour into them and push them to grow. Encourage your main worship team members to find students who play the same instrument or even sing the same parts and begin to build relationships. This will achieve two things. First, it will make your student worship teams feel accepted and appreciated by the worship ministry as a whole. Secondly, it will bring growth for both your students and adults because they will begin to learn from each other.


2…Begin raising up leaders at an early age

One of the most impactful times in my life was when I was in middle school and an older worship leader in my church began to give me opportunities to be involved. Chances are that a student at this age is going to be awkward and inexperienced (I know I definitely was), but finding students at this age will give them 7 to 8 years to gain experience before they graduate high school.  That’s more than enough time for a student to grow in extraordinary ways. The hope is that you will begin to grow a culture of discipleship within your worship ministry, and that students will begin to mentor each other as you mentor them.


3...Encourage and Embrace Growth

The truth is that most students interested in worship ministry will not be well-seasoned musicians, and that is a good thing. Never dismiss someone who does not match the quality that you think they should have. Instead, look for potential to grow, a heart that is passionate about worship, and someone who is willing to learn. There has to come a time where someone is willing to take a chance so that they can grow and become all that God wants them to be.


4…Don’t Discount the Power of a Student Leading Worship

Some of the most powerful worship that I have been a part of has been led by students, and by students leading multiple age groups in worship.  So often we dismiss student worship leaders as having the ability to lead adults in worship, but I believe God can work through the heart of a student in ways that are very unique.  A student leading worship for your whole church body can bring a fresh, new quality that your church can be challenged and changed by.


5…Step Back and Let Them Take Hold of Some things

Once you feel like a student is in a place where they are prepared and mature enough to take the lead on different aspects of your ministry, give them opportunities.  The worst thing that you could do for young worship leaders and musicians is to train them and prepare them, but never give them opportunities.  Allow your students to take a whole Sunday morning and lead worship, and give them space and the resources to succeed.

Overall, it is not too demanding to take the necessary steps to bring success and purpose into your student worship team. However, by investing into your student ministries’ worship, you are also investing into your church. And many beautiful, powerful things can come from it.

This question was asked at a conference where I was a guest on a panel on worship music. Honestly, at the moment I had a bit of a loss for words. The flow of new worship songs is essentially endless. I chuckle when I hear people say, "There's just not any great new worship songs!" Depending on your definition of great that may be true, but there certainly isn't a shortage of contenders.

So when the guy asked, "Should I be writing songs for my church?", my first impulse was to shout, "No! Please don't! We have plenty already!" But after thinking about it for a few moments, I said, "Maybe."

Non-committal, right? Well, the answer to this question does require some thought and a little self inspection. Here are some probing questions to consider that will help you answer this for yourself:

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When You're Out of the Picture

September 18, 2015

I’m sure mine is not the only church with a running joke about staff only having to work one day a week. Worship pastors get to take this to the next level when we say, “And all I have to do is play guitar!”

If only this were true.

Worship leaders are passionate about leading. We love to be involved on Sundays. We love creating moments where people can experience the presence of the Lord and passionately express their worship to God. Worship leaders are also human and we have very real, physical limits.

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