Wow, I'm really stuck trying to come up with yet another worship list for Sunday.
I can't even get the first couple of praise songs picked out.
Went thru my song book twice & was inspired by absolutely nothing. I'm always leaning towards something different than the previous few services. I have only young people on my team & they
only know the top 40 P&W songs going around today which sure makes it touch each week.
Anyone ever been there & what did you do?
Do you all ever correspond with each other & possibly exchange material?
Interesting, in that I find there is WAY too much worship material out there, and have to work through all the 'stuff' to find the nuggets.
I'd suggest finding songs that touch your heart from outside that limited repertoire (maybe buy some CDs from reliable worshippers who are God rather than gig focussed) and make a selection of songs that are inspirational that are required learning. Maybe also look at songs with some depth - I like the work of Keith & Krystin Getty, for example, because the lyrics are generally God-focussed and take the worshipper to places they might otherwise not travel.
It's always good to have a broad range of styles (both musical and lyrical) that can be covered. It is also good to not cover the song straight off the CD, but to vary the arrangement and speed up/slow down according to circumstances and where the congregation is moving.
Appreciate the reply Toni. I'm searching for my God-focussed nuggets
That's a great question. I've been there myself plenty of times. While it's true, not all music will inspire everyone, it's also important that you ARE being inspired in your own private worship times. What kind of stuff are you listening to right now? I try to keep a pretty broad base of artists around...like the person before mentioned, I LOVE keith green...at first I wasn't a huge fan because the music itself is sort of 80's-ish. But now, I absolutely LOVE it! His heart and passion for God was incredible. If every worship leader could grab a hold of that same zeal it would be amazing. I'm also really encouraged when I listen to Jason Upton's stuff, Will Reagan, Jonathan David Helser, Bethel Church, etc. Let me know if any of these are unfamiliar and I will send you a link or two.
Song content is VERY important, but so is good song craft. I confess that it bothers me to turn on christian radio and hear every other artist simply try to sound like their favorite top 40 worship leader. I'm trying to word this right...it's a disservice to the listener to be lazy in your song content and not have sound doctrine, but it's also a disservice to be lazy in your craft. Unfortunately, that's the majority of christian radio today. It's to the point that if I'm in the car, I won't even turn on the radio because it's all so "manufactured" to the point that there's no life left in it...the christian music industry has become just that...an industry.
But as for your question...I'd say let God give you a vision for where He wants to take worship and go with it. You'll have to start with where you're at. If the team only knows the top 40, use 'em. But as God inspires you in your worship times, begin to incorporate that into the corporate worship times. If you give your team the songs in advance they'll be able to pick them up. Something I've been doing lately is using new songs that I want to incorporate into worship at the end of service. If it's a slower song, I'll use it during the response time after the message. If it's a faster song, I'll use it as the dismissal song at the end of service. If you do that a couple weeks in a row the people will be more familiar with it when you use it in the service. Also, you can burn a CD for the sound guy to play at the start of service that has 5 or 6 songs that you would like to use in worship. As people are coming in, they're hearing the songs and will be able to pick up the melodies a little quicker when you actually use them.
Anyway, that's my 2 cents.
I think it'd be great to exchange materials. Maybe we should start a group on here for that? People can upload YouTube videos for songs that have built them up personally.
There is a website (sorry don't know the name, google it) that does hymns in modern styling.
You've got some great advice, so I'll not repeat.
I think it is good to go to other venues, and I'm not talking about worship concerts, but to other churches and see what' s happening there. You can learn a great deal and be inspired when you take a step back from worship leading and just be part of the congregation. You can pick up some great material and take a peak around you to see how a song is being received etc.
God Bless. Lorraine
Do you know the song "When the Music Fades" by Matt Redman? Awesome song but a more awesome story behind it. It grew out of a point when Matt's church was getting rather stagnant; he and other leaders felt that there was more interest in novel music than in seeking God. Their response was to stop the entertainment of having a band for a few weeks and, as the (mainly young) congregation turned back to God this song was one of the fruits.
If you feel you have reached an impasse, it is possible that the answer isn't finding new songs or the seeds of a fresh worship but putting your roots back to prayer and Bible reading; going back to the source.
Yes. It is called "The Heart of Worship".
If your "band" can't handle the songs that you want to sing with your congregation, I suggest you take your next worship time without them. Perhaps just yourself or you and a guitarist or keys player. For me, the music of Robin Mark takes the cake, man. Simple melodies, straight from scripture...
Pray. Listen. Have the faith to follow what you hear and feel in your heart as being the right thing to do.
I'm having a hard time coming up with a set list. My theme is "Listen to God." So far I have Abide in Me, Be Still (by Kari Jobe) and Be Still and Know (That I am God). I've looked in my books too and couldn't find anything that fit.