Archive | September, 2007

Biblical Manhood and Womanhood

I thank God for the voices that help us sort through the confusion about gender that exists not only in our culture, but in our churches and homes. Confusion that results in a redefining of marriage and the family, splits in major denominations, and unisex bathrooms at universities, among other things. The world has seen too few examples of men and women exercising their complementary gifts and roles, together bringing glory to the triune God who made us in his image. Why mention this on a blog designed for those who lead worship? Because as we embrace God’s ordained order for our lives we bring glory to our Creator and acknowledge the wisdom …

Continue Reading 1

When Feet Want to Be Hands

Two Sundays ago I had the privilege of preaching at my home church, Covenant Life. We’re in the middle of a series on 1 Corinthians and I spoke from 1 Cor. 12:12-31. Paul has been answering the Corinthians’ questions about who is “really” spiritual. They were under the mistaken assumption that certain gifts, like tongues, were a sign of true spirituality. Their attitude was dividing the church – the exact opposite of the unity the Spirit wants to bring. Paul presses his point home by using the analogy of the human body. In preparing for the message, I did a little research on the body and learned some amazing facts. Our liver performs …

Continue Reading 13

Who Pays for Music Equipment?

Justin wrote me and asked: How do you handle the purchase of instruments, equipment, and supplies for your musicians? Does the church purchase all instruments, some instruments, or no instruments? What about supplies (e.g. guitar strings, picks, drumsticks, batteries, reeds, etc.)? Or effects pedals, percussion pieces, etc.? We’ve done this different ways over the years. In general, we’ve learned that people tend to take better care of instruments and supplies when they own or purchase them. For that reason, we typically expect musicians to use their own instruments and purchase their own accessories. We’ve tried to avoid a mentality of …

Continue Reading 7

Why I Love Writing Songs

I’ve been composing songs for forty years now. That’s a long time. In high school, my songs were very functional; I wrote them to meet girls. It wasn’t the most original plan, but it worked. A girl would catch my eye, and rather than introduce myself like a normal person, I’d go home and write her a song. The next day, I’d casually mention that I had written a song just for her. Did she want to hear it? It was pretty effective. As you might expect, my reasons for writing songs have changed (due in part to the fact that I’ve been married for 31 years to the most amazing girl I’ve ever met). I now devote most of my song-writing efforts …

Continue Reading 4

A Song Writing Machine

As the Director of Worship Development for Sovereign Grace Ministries, one of the things I do is oversee the production and direction of the CD’s we produce. That means I talk to CJ Mahaney, who leads Sovereign Grace, and plan the themes we want to build our projects around. Our last project was a father-son offering, In a Little While , featuring the songs and voices of Mark and Stephen Altrogge. I posted on it not too long ago. Our next project, Lord willing, is going to be congregational worship songs around the theme of trusting God in the midst of suffering and trials, coming out next April. One of my hopes is to provide songs for the …

Continue Reading 1

What About Vocal Solos on Sunday Mornings?

I appreciate those of you who have taken the time to send me a specific question related to what you’re going through. Scott wrote in to ask: Is there a place for soloist/duets during the worship time?… If someone is gifted vocally, should I allow them to minister to the body (presuming that there are guidelines from the church leadership as to biblical content and appearance)? Does it cross the line leading to human-exaltation if there are those repeatedly clamoring for a certain person(s)? Eph. 5:19 says we’re to be “addressing one another in psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs.” It’s normal to understand that as congregational singing. After …

Continue Reading 12

Worshiping the Triune God

Recently a Roman Catholic bishop suggested that Christians could pray to Allah. Al Mohler posted a response on his blog. He wrote: From its very starting point Islam denies what Christianity takes as its central truth claim — the fact that Jesus Christ is the only begotten Son of the Father. If Allah has no Son by definition, Allah is not the God who revealed himself in the Son. How then can the use of Allah by Christians lead to anything but confusion . . .and worse? While I doubt that anyone who normally reads Worship Matters is thinking about worshiping Allah, it did remind me how important it is to identify the God we worship when we meet …

Continue Reading 7

How Do I Lead My Church Through Change?

Chris sent me this question: My church, since its inception, has had a mostly traditional service. We sing hymns primarily with a spiritual song or two mixed in, and almost exclusively use a piano (we do sometimes have an acoustic guitar or violin play along with it). My pastor would like to integrate a number of instruments, including an electric guitar and percussion as people learn how to play them. But a number of families have strong convictions against anything that resembles rock n roll. I believe these families would leave which, in my mind, is a travesty since it is over instruments and style. Personally, I don’t mind worshiping …

Continue Reading 12

New Song – How Great You Are

One of the joys of doing what I do is meeting people who share a similar passion for glorifying Jesus Christ through music. Will Pavone has been a good friend of mine for the past few years. He was part of the group Circadian Rhythm a few years ago, served as a worship pastor at McLean Bible Church, and is now at Dallas Theological Seminary. Besides being a great husband and dad, Will is a gifted songwriter. I was e-mailing him the other day about a song I’ve recommend a couple times on Worship Matters, called “How Great You Are.” Will said I could feel free to let people know about or give away any of his songs. He’s that kind of guy. So here …

Continue Reading 1

Powered by WordPress. Designed by Woo Themes