Archive | May, 2008

More Songs from New Attitude

On Sunday night and Monday morning at the New Attitude conference we added 17 string players to the band. Pretty amazing. None of it would have been possible apart from the gifts and labors of Judah Groveman, a cellist/guitarist/songwriter in our church who spent many hours arranging the parts. He did a brilliant job. They string players were all from Sovereign Grace churches. They’ve spent years developing their skills on violin, viola, or cello. Thank God for their parents who obviously have made a significant financial investment over the years. One of the songs we sang with strings was Nail My Glory, written mostly by my son, Devon, …

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Songs from New Attitude

Life has been wonderfully full lately. Got back late (read VERY late) Tuesday night from the New Attitude conference, where about 3200 singles and young married couples gathered to sing God’s praise, hear the Word of God preached, experience meaningful fellowship, and exhaust themselves doing it all. You can read more about it at the New Attitude site. It was a real privilege to participate in the conference. My son, Devon, led the corporate worship with the Na Band. We sang a number of songs from their new CD, Looked Upon. One that seemed to have a significant impact was All I Have is Christ, written by my other son, Jordan, who plays drums …

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Non-Christians on the Worship Team?

Recently a discussion developed over at the New City Church blog about a paragraph in my book. Here’s the paragraph in question: Even though musicians aren’t necessarily “elders” or “teachers” their presence in front of the congregation week after week implies that their life is worthy of emulation—not flawless, but demonstrating the fruit of the gospel. When that’s not true, the church gets the message that worship is more about music than the way we live. Likewise, when non-Christian musicians are used, we’re implying that the art of worship is more important than the heart. (p. 230) The comments focused around the topic of …

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Why Worship Matters

Last week I asked people to answer the question, “Why does worship matter?” in 100 words or less. I said I’d pick the top 20 answers and send them a copy of Worship Matters, so that they could post a review on their blog. I received some great answers from as far away as Australia. Of course, if you live in Australia, you don’t think that’s far at all. Here are some of my favorite responses. Ryan James said worship matters because everyone worships. Worship matters because it is the inescapable activity of all people everywhere regardless of whether they are a Christian or even “religious.” All people have some sort of “god” that they orient …

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Working on Another CD, Passing the Baton

Last week I was in the Sovereign Grace studio with producer Sal Oliveri, recording the vocals for our next project, Psalms, due out at the WorshipGod08 conference in July. I can’t believe we’re already working on another CD when Come Weary Saints just came out. Any way, it was a long but fulfilling week. Ryan Baird, from the Sovereign Grace church in Pasadena, CA, and part of the band West Coast Revival, sang five songs, and brought his usual blend of passion, strength, and thoughtfulness to each song. He also entertained us at times with his brilliant impersonations. Here’s a sample of Kermit singing part of “Greater Than We Can Imagine,” …

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Free Copy of Worship Matters for Twenty Bloggers

Worship Matters, the book, has been out for a few weeks now, and I’ve been encouraged by initial responses. When I was writing it, I prayed that the book would be give worship leaders, pastors, and musicians a clear and practical biblical perspective on how they can most effectively serve the church in the area of corporate worship. Seems to be having that effect so far. A few folks have already reviewed the book on their blog. You can check them at Discerning Reader, Gospel Prism, and CROSS-eyed. In an effort to get word out I’m giving away 20 copies of Worship Matters for people who will review it on their blog. Just send me an email at the …

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Are Hymns Too Weighty To Take In?

A Worship Matters reader sent me this question: With the hymns being so rich in lyrical content and theological ideas, there are often times where we can get to the end of the hymn and think “Well, what was all that about?” let alone getting to a point of engaging our hearts in response to the truth. From your experience, what could we do in terms of leading and arranging hymns with weighty (not a negative term) theological and lyrical content to allow room and time for people to engage God in meaningful worship through the song? Before I answer this, let me share a few thoughts on words in corporate worship. One of the primary purposes …

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Worship Matters Book Giveaway

At some point I want to give away some copies of my book, but I just learned that the folks at blog.worship.com are doing just that this week. In addition, they’ll be posting the four videos I did for the book that outline the four sections: The Leader The Task Healthy Tensions Right Relationships Stop by and check it out. …

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Come Weary Saints Now Available

After months of planning and recording, Come Weary Saints, the latest project from Sovereign Grace has been released. At the Sovereign Grace Music site we say that “Come Weary Saints is an invitation to redirect your focus to the God whose love has been forever demonstrated at the cross of Calvary.” The CD contains twelve songs, mostly written with a congregation in mind, that reference our trials and suffering in a genuine but redemptive way. In his book, The Wages of Spin, Carl Trueman wrote an article called “What Can Miserable Christians Sing?” He warns: “A diet of unremittingly jolly choruses and hymns inevitably creates an unrealistic …

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