Yesterday was an exceptionally full day at the Contemporary Worship Institute and it was full of really good stuff.
Yesterday morning Greg Scheer was present and led us through three workshops:
Foundations of Modern Worship
Psalms in Modern Worship
Global Music in Modern Worship
I particularly found his Foundations of Modern Worship to be interesting. He talked about understanding worship as an ongoing act that is part of the outpouring of love from the Trinity – the same outpouring of love from the Trinity that led to creation. In this model of worship we don’t “begin” worship, we enter into the ongoing act.
During the afternoon session Doug Flather took us through a workshop called A Bunch of Really Practical Stuff. One of the things most fascinating for me was conversation about tempo families in music and the need to utilize different tempos in music to set the mood for worship.
Last night, after dinner on the plaza with a friend, we went to Jacob’s Well for an emerging worship experience. Shortly before we were set to begin the power went out on the block and we ended up worshipping in the dark by candle light – it was a really special time.
One of the most striking things for me yesterday was the juxtapostion of our time at COR and our time at Jacob’s Well. On the surface they seem to be very different churches – one is housed in a huge suburban structure in southern Johnson County and the other is housed in a smaller/older structure in midtown Kansas City. However, as I reflected on these two churches last night I was struck by a number of similarities and the ways in which these two churches have much in common:
1) They were both started dynamic Pastors with a clear vision
2) Both starts were surrounded by some very fortunate circumstances
3) Both churches connect with the culture of their communities in direct and intentional ways
4) The leaders of both churches have very high expectations of their staff and laity
5) The laity of both churches have very high expectations of their pastor and leaders
6) Both churches have exceptional music led by people in the community who are connected with networks of other artists and musicians.
I will continue to reflect on these similarities and the greater questions that they raise about what it takes to successfully start a church that reaches people where they are.