2015’s Top 5 WORST Trends in Worship Leading

I have identified five trends that have come to life this year that might be damaging to our expression of Christian worship. Some of these are connected to a tool’s application. The wonderful tools we have around us and the choices for leaders are greater than ever. Our ingenuity and cleverness has reached new heights. But, with all creativity there are two sides. Creativity as innovation solves a problem. Creativity as art tells a story. When we forget the story—basically who we are—in our desire to solve a presenting issue we lose ourselves.

Something BIG and NEW: “a beautiful liturgy” Music Project!

At age 13, my daughter Emilie Kirkpatrick began leading worship with me. In the past eight years, she has released two projects of her own songs and is a in skillful worship leading as well as songwriting. These eight year have formed a collaboration. Recently, we formed “a beautiful liturgy” as a music group to write and lead worship! We have already recorded one of the five songs for our 5-song project! But, we need your help and support as independent musicians. On Kickstarter.com or on this video and link, you can see and hear our story! The site even has a sample of the song we already recorded. Please, give it a watch and let us know what you think!

Does modern worship fail by trashing the line between the sacred and secular?

A few years ago, a young adult very openly expressed his frustration with worship at church. “Rich, why is it that I feel closer to God at a Coldplay concert than I do at church?” This was a stunning admission, because it represented not just his experience but that of many and perhaps spoke to some doubts in my own mind. However, what came from this conversation changed how I viewed worship in church. Worship at church should either be made more like the secular music out there, if that is truly more spiritual. Or, there is something missing in the worship at church that needed to be changed. I tried the first, making relevancy a goal, but I think that hand has been overplayed. So, I am left with the second idea. What is missing?

Top Ten Ways to Have a Fantastic Worship Experience!

If you are an avid worshiper of Christ and attend church on a regular basis, you probably already know what a fantastic worship experience is to you, right? Or, maybe you don’t attend church as often as you might because your past worship experiences never hit the mark. Having been to church more than many, I see the gamut and know that even when one person is soaring in their version of a worship service, another may be unaffected. There are many factors that contribute to why there is so much disparity, but I think I found ten reasons that will aid you in your experience of worship. I hope these help you!

Utility versus Beauty: When the bottom line invades our worship

In our society, what works and produces profit is what we value. While we hunger for a post-modern identity and story, the structures, all around us scream utility, conformity and results. Money rules. This might even be true in our houses of worship as we may have unintentionally turned business metrics on our expression of worship. The question is this: do we value utility more than beauty in our worship? The answer is that our culture-infused church in modern America apparently does.

Musicianship Matters! Five identifiers of a skilled worship musician.

From the first note to the last, what is played musically in church matters. Music is one of the historically prominent and powerful vehicles for our Christian worship–today as well as in the past. Whether the worship is expressed on a Fender strat or sung by a choir in full robes the music matters. Like the beams of a building need competent engineering, the execution of our music leadership requires skill. You can compensate all you want with automated loops, tracks and auto-tuning but in the end polished bronze is still bronze. Gold is the real thing. Just because something is shiny does not make it valuable or worthy in the long run. Is what we are offering as valuable as we think it is? Good musicianship and the several components that it contains matter.