What books have impacted you as a worshipper? How have you used them in your ministry?
I'll start off with Knowledge of the Holy by A.W. Tozer. This book brought me to my knees like no other when I read it 20 years ago. It helped me see how great God is. I like how it's broken down by attribute with each attribute receiving a short but powerful chapter. I have encouraged team members to read it in the past and have read excerpts during rehearsals and worship times.
Another is Desiring God by John Piper. Many people say that worship is not "for us". John Piper challenges that in Desiring God. The book can be summed up in one statement, "God is most glorified in me when I am most satisfied in him". Worship is for God and us. He designed it that way! He delights in us finding joy in worship and we can be open and honest about it and even seek that joy. Would you take your kid to Six Flaggs and expect them to only focus on how great you are to provide the fun? You probably would find your joy in your child's joy. It sounds less spiritual but when you read it you may discover that it's Biblical. He also points out that attempts to scrub our minds and vocabulary of 'me' and 'I' are often more self cenetered anyway. I haven't used this book in any way other than for personal growth but I know the fruit has come out in my ministry. It's helped me lighten up and enjoy God istead of working so hard to look spiritual and selfless by saying 'the right things'.
I have only started reading this book, but already can see the importance of its message. It has the great title of "Worship is a bowl of noodles". It looks at the lyrics of the songs we sing compared to the important themes in the Bible. It concludes "that our worship should mostly or always contain songs about: Jesus, The Cross, The Blood, Salvation, Eternal Life, Heaven, and any other issues directly related to the cross." He also says that all songs should be about praise, which he defines as "Saying good things about God, His attributes, and about what He has done (His works)." This is the meat balls and vegetables, and anything else he says, is just noodles and don't really help us. Anyway, the book is by Victorian Dennis Prince. I can recommend a read. http://resource.com.au/new/home.php
The Ragamuffin Gospel by Brennan Manning Imagine: A Vision for Christians in the Arts by Steve Turner (our quarterly book-club pick at http://artistsworkbench.blogspot.com) New Way To Be Human by Charlie Peacock The Heart of the Artist by Rory Noland How Shall We Then Live? by Francis Schaeffer Roaring Lambs by Bob Briner