Set Lists 21st March Morning & Evening Service

22 03 2010

A.M. SET LIST

P.M. SET LIST

Yesterday was a big day in which I led worship at both our morning and night services. One highlight was introducing the song Glory To God Forever in our evening service. This song was written by Steve Fee and Vicky Beeching and has a very singable chorus and a bridge that contains lyrics of sacrifice and offering:

“Take my life and let it be

All for You and for Your glory

Take my life and let it be Yours”

It was a fantastic day of worship and it was again a genuine privilege to lead our community in this way. In the morning we used Brenton Brown and Brian Doerksen’s song Hallelujah (Your Love Is Amazing) for the first time in ages and I was almost surprised at how fresh this song felt. I love the story behind the writing of this song. Brenton Brown was visiting Brian Doerksen to write some tunes and was busy writing whilst Brian had his hands full looking after his kids. The story goes that Brenton came up to Brian with the lyrics and tune to the first verse at a time where Brian had his hands full with his children. Brenton asked Brian if he had any ideas for a chorus and possibly with some exasperation Brian exclaimed: “Hallelujah…Hallelujah…Hallelujah…Your love makes me sing!!!” Apparently Brenton looked at him and said something like  “No…surely not! It can’t be that easy!” And that is the song as we sing it!!!

Anyway I will keep these posts coming when I lead worship.

God bless!!





Set List 28th February Morning Service

28 02 2010

This week I discovered the screen image saver on my iPhone, so I thought I would use it to upload my set list each time I lead worship at church. So here it is!!!

Not too much else to say except that in this service we introduced Here Is Love which is a hymn from the Welsh Revival of 1904/05. Inspiration for this arrangement comes from recent recordings by Matt Redman (Hymns Ancient & Modern)and Brian Johnson (Bethel Live). For a song that is over 100 years old, it has such wonderful lyrics and tells such an amazing story of God’s love and mercy!!! The other songs have become pretty standard for our church community. Bless His Name by Tony Sanchez (popularised by Jeremy Riddle’s recordings), Love The Lord by Lincoln Brewster (which we use as a Kids Song with actions) and Everlasting God by Brenton Brown.

Anyway I will try to post one of these each time I lead. feel free to comment on these songs and songs that you enjoy or are using at your church.





essentials*green 09 Creative Project – Let Your Kingdom Come

24 04 2009

“For: The Institute of Contemporary And Emerging Worship StudiesSt. Stephen’s UniversityEssentials Blue Online Worship Theology Coursewith Dan Wilt

 

As part of completing the essentials*green course I have written a song as the final creative project. The song is called Let Your Kingdom Come.

 

Over the last few weeks I have been reflecting on the worship values that were presented through the course. Each in their way have impacted me and challenged my approach to worship and worship leadership, forcing me to refine my views and understanding. If I had to target one value that stood out to me, it would be Kingdom Expectation. For some deeper insights into this, check out my previous blogpost. It is easy to go through the motions when preparing to lead worship (and even whilst leading), especially if one is leading on a regular basis. However. It is essential to remember the responsibility that this role entails.

 

The song Let Your Kingdom Come was partially written in the pool. That’s right in a swimming pool!! I am a keen swimmer and regularly swim laps to keep fit or in preparation for an ocean swim. I find the pool a great place to process thoughts and ideas, it’s even a great place to pray!! Well recently I was doing some laps and processing what it was that ‘moved me’ in the essentials*green course. The idea of Kingdom Expectation came to mind and I just prayed “Lord, Let Your kingdom come.” I then thought this would be a great hook for a song. By lap 14 of my 40 laps I had the chorus melody and lyrics pretty much complete as they are in the recording. I then spent the next 26 laps trying to remember it. So I sang it over and over to be sure. It’s amazing how quickly the rest of the session went while I was singing the chorus!!! The rest of the song was developed over the next week.

 

My plan for this song was try to capture the idea of Kingdom Expectation in a call-to-worship style song (a song used to begin a worship gathering). If those gathered also come expecting to see God transform, restore and renew lives, then they will be prepared to worship God. As mentioned in my earlier post, it is easy for people to come to church without any preparation and to treat the gathering like a concert that they are watching – not participating in. So I tried to develop a lyric that would assist people to be expectant and to remember that when we are gathered the Lord is present and Jesus is at work through His Spirit.

 

Hopefully you enjoy the song. Please leave a comment if you have listened to it. Feel free to let me know what you really think. Click on the media player below to listen to a rough demo recorded on Garageband on my MBP. The chord chart for guitar with lyrics is also below.

 

I will conclude this series of blogposts with a quote from Dan Wilt who is an amazing teacher, educator – a genuine inspiration. I think it sums up the ideas above.

 

“If we don’t expect that God will speak, move, heal and deliver as we come together to offer thanks and reciprocate love, then why would we expect the community to expect that God will act among us? It seems clear that, to some large degree, the expectation of those leading a time of gathered worship before God precipitates others’ expectations. After all, why would we expect God to respond to the indifferent heart, the soul that is going through the motions of preparation without any evident hunger in their spirit? While we make the music, execute the movements, rehearse the visuals and prepare the spaces, we must do so as those intent on God responding with favor to our efforts – not simply as those assuming that some helpful information or creative reflection will be offered to the congregants. God meets us in many places, and He often meets in the place of humble expectation.” 1

 

 

(1) Dan Wilt, essentials*green: Online Studies in Worship Values & Spiritual Formation – Online Course Text (New Brunswick: The Institute Of Contemporary & Emerging Worship Studies)

 

 Let Your Kingdom Come Chord Sheet






Worship Values Part 2

4 04 2009

I’ve Been Thinking About  Values

(Essentials Green)

“For: The Institute of Contemporary And Emerging Worship StudiesSt. Stephen’s UniversityEssentials Green Online Worship Theology Coursewith Dan Wilt

The next two worship values to consider are Accessibility and Cultural Relevance (see Worship Values Part 1 for the first part of this installment). To some extent I see these two values as quite similar and strongly linked. After all if we are considering accessibility, then cultural relevance seems to be and implied consideration.

 

ACCESSIBILITY

This is a vital consideration in my worship leading. The role of worship leader is not to take the spotlight or limelight in a worship gathering. In fact, Jesus Christ in His role as mediator is actually the worship leader. Unfortunately if we as worship leaders do not consider accessibility, then unnecessary attention could be drawn away from God. (Although I have my thoughts on this too, wondering if this is the case, is a person coming to worship God with a heart anticipating to worship no matter what happens from the platform?)

 

I believe that Dan Wilt’s suggestion in relation to choices in a worship context that, “this may involve sacrificing our own preferences in many cases to serve the wider community – often more frequently than we would like,” 1 is important for me to come back to regularly. It is essential for those leading worship to do so with a spirit of humility. Remembering that we are called to a role of service. A role where we are not playing to an audience but providing scaffolds and worship expressions for others to worship and give glory to our Great God. In a way we are called to build bridges for people. We should be constantly praying: God how would you use me to open up doors and build bridges? How can I make this time of worship accessible to those gathered? We want to see bridges built so people can connect intimately with a God who pursues them. Sometimes our preferred songs, styles or worship expressions may be appropriate, sometimes others may need to be considered. It is vital to realise that we are not just talking about music here. It is much more than that. We are called to think with humility about our own desires and worship expressions and those of others we are serving.

 

I really enjoyed this quote from Wilt:

 

“We want our community to engage with God’s story on every level, and to enter intimately into that story as those pursued by a welcoming, accessible God.” 2

 

This week I was reminded of the fact that our community comes together from so many varied experiences in a week. It is important to acknowledge this early in a worship gathering, either through a call to worship, a word of encouragement or a prayer. This enables the community to feel a shared experience and to realize that no matter what has happened in the week or day, during this moment we are gathered to worship God as a community. I was also reminded of the importance of community in worship and not just an individualistic approach to worship, through a quote from Eddie Gibbs. This quote is quite relevant to accessibility and its importance:

 

“Our gathering is essentially a corporate and communal activity. The other worshipers around us are not incidental. They must not be excluded during our time of communion with the Lord, but are essential to it. If worship is to lead to wholeness, it must be expressed corporately.” 3

 

I connected with this great idea in the essentials*blue course and it seems relevant here. The idea is that I feel led to be a Salvific Storyteller!! Whilst leading a service I try to select songs, prepare or spontaneously pray prayers and encourage our gathering with themes and ideas that tell God’s story of creation, grace, love, restoration and mercy. Hopefully if people aren’t able to access the music or worship expression as they desire, they can definitely worship God whilst considering these other areas in a gathering or service.

 

CULTURAL RELEVANCE

I find this an interesting value to consider. How far do we go with this? I guess as we move into our later years of life we will all be challenged with this idea in terms of music, as new styles will undoubtedly be introduced into a worship music setting.

 

“Aren’t you tired of being relevant? I’m sick and tired of being relevant; relevant means someone else got there first and now I’m trying to connect. We need to stop being relevant and start leading the way.” 4

 

I think it is an important consideration for Christian worship music and although I haven’t thought it through, I think if we have established music that is leading the way, this will quite likely address this value of cultural relevance. I also have this idea circulating in my mind that people will be drawn to genuine, authentic, spirit-led worship, even if the style of music is not cutting edge or at the forefront of culture. Obviously all this consideration needs to be tempered with the ideas that Don Williams presents in the short video “Subvert Culture” in relation to relativism and the absolute proclamation that “Jesus is LORD!” As Don Williams says, “we have the Great Story” 5 and it is our task to communicate this.

 

“Our Creator God has hard-wired a capacity for creativity into every one of us, and wants to use it for Kingdom works and Kingdom worship in our churches and in our streets.” 6

 

The above quote reminded me that if we are using our God given creativity in our worship planning, writing and choice, then this will surely draw people in culturally, as they see God’s creative works unleashed within His people and as the Spirit draws people through creative worship. The consideration of these two values does not prohibit us from being creative leaders. In fact, just the opposite. Considering these values carefully will encourage us to use our creative gifts to their full potential and hopefully realise more than we thought possible.

 

 

I was also encouraged as I completed Andy Park’s book “To Know You More” this week that these issues are all challenges for him too!! We will never create or plan a worship experience that is perfectly accessible and culturally relevant to all. If we try to hard we may just water down that which shouldn’t be watered down. Maybe we also need to consider (and be content with) planning to reach fewer people more deeply.

 

 

 

(1) Dan Wilt, essentials*green: Online Studies in Worship Values & Spiritual Formation – Online Course Text (New Brunswick: The Institute Of Contemporary & Emerging Worship Studies), p.12

(2) ibid, p. 12

(3) Eddie Gibbs, Time In A Bottle – Inside Worship Magazine Vol. 60 (Vineyard Music USA, 2007)

(4) Erwin McManus, cited by Dan Wilt, essentials*green: Online Studies in Worship Values & Spiritual Formation – Online Course Text (New Brunswick: The Institute Of Contemporary & Emerging Worship Studies), p.12

(5) Don Williams, Subvert Culture (New Brunswick: The Institute Of Contemporary & Emerging Worship Studies), Video

(6) Andrew Smith, Bloodshed To Beauty – Inside Worship Magazine Vol. 54 (Vineyard Music USA, 2007)





Worship Values Part 1

28 03 2009

I’ve Been Thinking About  Values

(Essentials Green)

“For: The Institute of Contemporary And Emerging Worship StudiesSt. Stephen’s UniversityEssentials Green Online Worship Theology Coursewith Dan Wilt

 

 

Two of the fundamental values of worship are intimacy and integrity. This week I have been reading and reflecting on these values and relating them to the life of the church and particularly in the life of a worship leader.

 

Dan Wilt suggests that,

 

“We want to create spaces that give people both the time and the context that they need to reveal themselves to God in a fresh way, and for God to reveal Himself to them in a fresh way.” 1

 

This is so vital in a corporate gathering but at times we choose to rush through services for a variety of reasons (reasons which are both positive and negative). This does not fully allow people space to connect with God in a self-revealing manner. We need to create space for breathing, lingering so that people can explore a relationship with God intimately. This may mean not rushing into the next song, not speaking and also some flexibility in the service order and timing. Music can create such an amazing space for intimacy. This can be in quiet, reflective songs but also in loud celebratory songs. Hence one of the key tasks of the worship leader is to provide an atmosphere and opportunity for their congregation to worship God intimately.

 

Intimacy in musical worship has been a real connecting point between myself and my Creator. Through music and lyrics I have always felt the presence and co-self-revealing relationship that exists due to God’s initiation and my opportunity to respond to him through worship. This relationship is expressed by Wilt in this way;

 

“When we turn to Him, and respond to His love with honesty, vulnerability and self-disclosure, then we are engaging in the intimate relationship into which He Himself is inviting us.”  2

 

This week I was challenged to consider my personal worship times so that when I am leading in a communal context it is an overflow of what God is doing in my heart of hearts through my personal moments of intimacy with Him. Brian Doerksen puts it like this,

 

“Real intimacy cannot be created by simply singing the right songs. Intimate worship really happens when the songs come as an overflow of a heart full of love.” 3

 

I have noticed that when I worship God in a quiet place at home with the songs chosen for a particular event or service, there is a depth and richness to these songs when led in a communal setting. Andy Park puts it this way,

 

“The imagery of intimacy is one way of describing a deep, interactive life with God.” 4

 

I want my life to be interactive with God in a relationship centred in the intimacy he has displayed through His Son, Jesus Christ. Intimacy in worship demonstrated in a variety of settings will undoubtedly point to the saving grace of our Great God through Jesus Christ. Doerksen states that, “when we embrace intimacy – real intimacy  – in worship, we are fulfilling our destiny to be in a surrendered relationship with God.” 5 It is also quite likely that the response of worshipping God intimately will be a proactive one. Worship leader Matt Redman claims that “when people’s hearts are caught up with the Lord in an intimate way, then their hands will follow.” 6 A life connecting intimately with God in worship will be one that is outward focused with a strong conviction of loving one’s neighbour in a global community context. This leads us quite fittingly to the value of integrity.

 

Integrity is such a key value in my approach to worship leadership. At times, it has led to feelings of inadequacy and doubt in my calling. Realising the difficulty to lead a life that is full of integrity in the midst of struggling with sin and relationships (well life in general really!) can result in losing confidence in being involved in communal worship settings.

 

The passage in Amos 5: 21 – 24 is one that often reminds me of the importance of integrity in worship. In this instance the religious practices of Israel are rejected because of the way people were worshipping. “Away with your songs” is a reminder that worship is not all about music and whist considering integrity it is important to reflect on the lifestyle of the worshipper.

 

Remembering that we are being made more like Jesus through the ongoing work of the Holy Spirit in our lives is essential to establishing confidence and walking in a worship leadership path. Dan expresses it nicely and I love this idea of our “general trajectory of life aligning with the values of and ideas we are communicating.”  7

 

I want my life’s trajectory to match up to the words that I sing, the direction I lead my communities and the values expressed by Jesus during His ministry on earth. Again this feels precarious at times. It is vital to constantly evaluate the state of our hearts and minds and as Andy Park says, “as worship leaders we should regularly ask ourselves whether we are leading worship through our lives or just through our music.” 8

 

These two values must be at the forefront of our thinking in relation to worship. They are ideas that must be regularly communicated to our leaders, teams and communities. We must set our life and those we lead on the track of integrity and intimacy. These two values are closely related and feed off one another. This final statement and encouragement of Dan Wilt’s is a great summary:

 

“The worship leaders or writers or musicians often that we most respect have a very rich ongoing secret life of worship with God and its because that dynamic is so much a part of who they are…over time it changes the integrity of what happens up front.” 9

 

(1) Dan Wilt, essentials*green: Online Studies in Worship Values & Spiritual Formation – Online Course Text (New Brunswick: The Institute Of Contemporary & Emerging Worship Studies), p.7

(2) ibid, p. 7

(3) Brian Doerksen, Intimacy In Worship – Inside Worship Magazine Vol. 62 (Vineyard Music USA, 2007)

(4) Andy Park, To Know You More (Illinois: Intervarsity Press, 2002), p. 35

(5) Brian Doerksen, Intimacy In Worship – Inside Worship Magazine Vol. 62 (Vineyard Music USA, 2007)

(6) Matt Redman, Intimacy (New Brunswick: The Institute Of Contemporary & Emerging Worship Studies), Video

(7) Dan Wilt, The Worship Value Of Intimacy (New Brunswick: The Institute Of Contemporary & Emerging Worship Studies), Video

(8) Andy Park, To Know You More (Illinois: Intervarsity Press, 2002), p. 60

(9) Dan Wilt, The Worship Value Of Integrity (New Brunswick: The Institute Of Contemporary & Emerging Worship Studies), Video





essentials*blue 09 Creative Project – Jesus Is Alive

18 02 2009

“For: The Institute of Contemporary And Emerging Worship StudiesSt. Stephen’s UniversityEssentials Blue Online Worship Theology Course with Dan Wilt

One amazing outcome of completing the Essentials Blue: Studies in Worship Theology & Biblical Worldview Course has been my desire to become a Salvific Storyteller. Dan Wilt summarises this clearly by saying that:

“Our job as human beings is not to save, as though we as Christians could accomplish the work that only God can do to rescue the whole of humanity from its plight (though many Christians have seen this as their primary co-mission with Christ throughout history). Rather, our primary mission is to tell the story of salvation, from original creation, to fall from relationship, to restoration through cross and resurrection, to complete and universal new creation.” 1

In my most recent song, Ancient One, I tried to tell the grand biblical narrative and I found myself attempting to do something similar with this song. The major difference is I wanted this song to have a much stronger focus on The Saviour – Jesus Christ. Regarding Jesus and the cross, Wilt states:

“In the suffering of Jesus on the cross, we see the love of the Father manifest in the most stunning and profound of ways – the complete self- giving of His only Son. If you only write one song, or create one expression, related to the work of the cross, focus on this reality – that God so loved, that God gave, and gave and gave of Himself.” 2

Well this was definitely a challenge for me! Although this song doesn’t quite capture God’s giving and giving and giving of Himself, it does create a salvific story. My aim was to write a celebration song about Jesus. The title – Jesus Is Alive, came to me quite quickly. I then set out to highlight these ideas in each section:

Verse 1

– Jesus’ life and ministry on earth.
– God sending His Son from heaven to earth as the rescuer and healer
(N.T. Wright puts it this way, “With Jesus, God’s rescue operation has been put into effect once for all.” 3)

Chorus

– Proclamation that Jesus lives
– Jesus is seated at the right hand of the Father
– We are forgiven and set free

Verse 2

– New life in Christ
– Holy Spirit sent to guide us
– Leading creation’s worship
– God’s kingdom has come

Bridge

– A response to this story
– We must worship Him for who He is – Saviour & King

So this was my song story. A rough version of the song as it exists at the moment can be heard by clicking on the mp3 link below and there is also a link to the chord chart. Please leave a comment below about the song and feel free to use it at some stage (if you like it!!). I will leave you with one last challenge from the course:

“Augustine understood that God is about restoring, re-creating, redeeming, reconciling and
reclaiming His world. As those who are rescued, he recognized that we who are “saved
storytellers” have a vital responsibility and role to play – we call others to become fully human through the redemptive, atoning and saving work of Christ.” 4

Let’s do it!!

(1) Dan Wilt, essentials*blue: Online Studies in Worship Theology & Biblical Worldview – Online Course Text (New Brunswick: The Institute Of Contemporary & Emerging Worship Studies), p.32
(2) ibid, p. 19-20
(3) N. T. Wright, Simply Christian (London: SPCK, 2006), p. 79
(4) Dan Wilt, essentials*blue: Online Studies in Worship Theology & Biblical Worldview – Online Course Text (New Brunswick: The Institute Of Contemporary & Emerging Worship Studies), p.33

Jesus Is Alive PDF

Jesus Is Alive mp3





essentials RED FALL ’08 CREATIVE PROJECT

5 12 2008

“For: The Institute of Contemporary And Emerging Worship StudiesSt. Stephen’s UniversityEssentials Red Online Worship History Course with Dan Wilt

Pastiche:

“a literary, artistic, musical, or architectural work that imitates the style of previous work” 1

 

In recent years, my experience has seen contemporary hymns as effective musical tools for communities to reflect on past practices in the worship language of music, this whilst they are set in a contemporary context. This style of song has bridged generational divides within the churches and groups I have led in worship, allowing all to utilise the music worship language. Hymns such as In Christ Alone, Behold The Throne Of God Above and Praise The Father, Praise The Son, have all had a reflective quality that has brought musical structures from the past into the present era. For my creative project I was keen to write a pastiche on this hymn style, developing the lyrics with ideas covered in the essentials Red Course and constructing a melody that reflected very similar qualities to the songs mentioned above. This includes such qualities as ease of singing, learning and remembering, along with a familiarity that will lead to comfortable introduction in a communal setting.

 

The idea of story was strong in this course. Using various worship languages to remember God’s salvific story was a feature. Robert Webber writes, “Through worship the world learns its own story. And how will others hear unless we do God’s story in worship, calling people to remember God’s story.” 2 The lyrical theme of the song focuses on God’s overarching meta-narrative of history within which the song seeks to call people to worship and reflect on God’s character, with Christ as the centrepiece and to bring language of the now but not yet, (the eschaton) to the table.

 

“Sunday worship that is true to what the Christian faith is points to the hope of the world – the expectancy that Christ will come to deliver the ultimate blow to all the powers of evil, destroying them forever. He will establish the new heavens and the new earth. He will reign forever over his redeemed creation. His shalom will rest over all he has made. So Sunday after Sunday the happy ending to the great drama of the world is proclaimed and enacted. It is in our hymns, our Scripture readings, our preaching and our eucharistic celebration when we do this in remembrance of him until he comes again (1 Cor. 11:26).” 3

 

I love this quote from Robert Webber in our course text: Ancient Future Time. It possesses such depth in terms of hope, God’s promises and the importance of remembering.

 

I’m not too sure where the term Ancient One came to me from, possibly from the title of this course text by Webber “Ancient-Future Time.” Ancient One as a “name” for God reminds me of the God of eternal past historical existence but also suggests the One who was and is and is to come. The idea that God pre-exists our understanding of history, is present in our history: past, present and future, and is eternal caught my interest and so I set out to capture this in song.

 

Maybe the term pastiche can ring true for a generation of worship artisans who wish to reflect on past practices and worship languages that will lead to ‘riches drawn from the past energising us in our present worship experience and then propelling us forward into our emergent future together, leaving a legacy in worship history for future generations to come.” 4 We may not directly imitate as suggested in the above definition of pastiche but surely reflecting and remembering practices from the past will richly influence our present and future uses of the languages of worship. This should be the role of an artist or artisan in any generation.

 

(1) http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pastiche

(2) Robert E. Webber, Ancient-Future Worship: Proclaiming and Enacting God’s Narrative (Grand Rapids: Baker Books, 2008), p. 43

(3) Robert E. Webber, Ancient-Future Time – Forming Spirituality Through The Christian Year (Grand Rapids: Baker Books, 2004), p. 174

(4) Dan Wilt, essentials*red : A Worship Historical Synthesis (New Brunswick: The Institute Of Contemporary & Emerging Worship Studies), Video

 

ANCIENT ONE

 

O Ancient One, our God and King

We gather now to honour Him

Here in this place we lift our voice

And join the song, let all rejoice

 

Creator’s call brought all to life                   

Spoke words of Light throughout all time          

Sustaining all, this mystery                                

Through countless signs in history

 

The crowning act for all to see

Was Christ’s salvation victory

Our lives surrendered at Your throne

We worship You, O Ancient One

 

New life is here, we stand renewed             

Now one with Christ we rise anew

His Kingdom’s reign has now begun

We live in hope of more to come

 

Phil Dokmanovic

Copyright © 2008

Ancient One Chord Sheet

Ancient One mp3