“There is no answer to the question, ‘Why can’t we just forget all this stuff and worship God?’” (p. 14)
Methodology is an extension of philosophy. Every church must decide where to position itself on the cultural continuum of worship, from traditional to boomer contemporary to big box production to post-evangelical liturgy to singer-songwriter. You may think you are locked in to whatever you’re currently doing, but make no mistake, this is a choice. You cannot wish the style question away. The question is, as a leader, how much are you willing to invest in change and improvement?
“You want a worship design team that actually works? Forget the pastor as control center. Team equality is key.” (p. 36)
In healthy worship environments, teams are horizontal, not vertical, even if only in effect. In other words, work to de-emphasize organizational hierarchy. Empower those on your team with specific, real-world tasks. Senior pastors, let someone else facilitate the meeting, or handle organizing worship elements into a final flow, or researching creative angles. In this age, people expect to contribute, or they will fill their time elsewhere.
“Better than a good segue is one well-developed theme.” (p. 81)
A lot of churches I consult with are stymied by too many layers of influence. As other programs and players impact the flow of worship, a team might end up with several unrelated items in the same hour: commissioning a group to a mission trip to Africa; giving a nod to the current holiday; raising money for a new fund or activity; and so on. Rather than work on how you will transition from one element to another, make plans several weeks out and begin to shuffle items around or in some cases remove items, all with the goal of creating a single, unifying message for the day. No matter how well you segue and transition, if you’re dealing with several unrelated items in a single service, the only thing people will reflect on as they leave worship is lunch.
Go here to learn more about Taking Flight with Creativity: Worship Design Teams That Work.