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Posts from the ‘Participatory Worship’ Category


The “Curse” of the Calling

Two weeks ago, I wrote a post called “Worship Service Evaluation” where I made observations concerning the things that went well and the things that were distracting in a corporate worship service that I had recently attended. I really struggled with whether to publish the post for fear some people would take my observations the wrong way. Indeed, I received one email that chastised me for going to a worship service with a critical eye. Read more »


Worship Service Evaluation

This past Sunday, as my family was out of town for a few days, we had the opportunity to worship in an established Baptist church in another state, choosing their contemporary service that was held in the family life center. My ministry calling has wired me to evaluate worship services with an eye for what needs improvement. Unfortunately, last Sunday was no exception. As my family worshipped together corporately, my “consultant” hat was frequently appearing on my head. As I have reflected on the experience, I felt it would be helpful to provide a synopsis of the evaluation with hope that it will encourage others to evaluate their own services in several of these areas. Read more »


Corporate Worship: Who Are We Serving?

I came across this blog post from Kim Gentes recently that reinforced something about which I have strong convictions. I hear complaints on a regular basis from people across our state about this aspect of worship in their churches. Worship leaders, please take these words seriously–it can make a tremendous difference in the level of participation in your times of corporate worship:
First Encounter

We walked into the building, through the shopping mall doors into the large auditorium. No one opened the door, no one greeted us. We were exactly 9 minutes late. The room was perfectly lit, subdued overheads keeping the stage highlighted, while the crowd didn’t escape into complete darkness. Read more »


Nine Thoughts for Worship Leaders

In past posts, I have spent much time discussing ways that we can hurt our church’s corporate worship times. You can find several of those posts here. I came across this article recently which describes many of the same issues in a fresh way. Take a look… Read more »


Do You Have a Comprehensive Song List?

I am amazed by how many worship leader/planners put together the times of corporate worship without a comprehensive song list, which I consider a critical tool for planning. Read more »


Some Hindrances to a Smooth Flow in Worship

There are a number of things we as worship leaders/planners can do that harm our times of worship. Today I will outline a few key hindrances: Read more »

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Stay on the Melody, Please

Over the last several weeks, I have been talking about ways we can inadvertently lead our congregations to be spectators instead of active participants. Today, I have asked a fellow blogger/worship leader to share his thoughts on another major problem in some settings–worship leaders who stray from singing the melody of the song. Read more »


Introducing New Songs

Last week, I continued my series on things we do to create spectators in our church rather than active, participative worshippers. I began my discussion of how new songs can be a worship enhancer or a worship killer. Be sure to take a look at that post if you have not yet done so.When new songs are first introduced, the people have to take their eyes off the Lord and concentrate on the task of learning the new tune. There are ways we can introduce new songs that reduce the negative impact and promote the tremendous positives. Read more »

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New Songs: A Worship Enhancer or Worship Killer?

Today’s post is my third installment discussing things we do to create a culture of spectators in our churches rather than creating an environment that helps people worship with heart, soul, mind, and strength in participatory worship. Be sure to read the last two week’s posts if you have not done so already. Week One. Week Two.

Today, I will address another major hindrance to participatory worship–new songs. Read more »

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A Real KEY to Producing Spectators in Worship

Last week’s post began a discussion of things we do to create a culture of spectators in our church rather than creating an environment that helps people worship with heart, soul, mind, and strength in participatory worship. If you did not have a chance to read that post, please take time to read that one first.

Today, I want to address perhaps one of the greatest “transgressions” of worship leaders that leads to congregational spectatorship–the key of the song. Read more »

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Producing Pew Potatoes: Creating a Culture of Spectators

What is a “pew potato,” you may ask? It is a term I use to refer to a person in the church that takes on the characteristics of a “couch potato”–someone who sits on the pew in times of corporate worship and expects to be entertained without having to get involved in any way. Here is the sad truth: our churches, no matter the style of their worship, are producing and encouraging spectators in our corporate worship experiences to a large degree. Read more »