The team is made up of leaders of the various ministry areas of LifeWay – Students, Kids, Adults, Groups, Global, as well as leaders from various aspects of the work – Books, Events, Bibles, and more. It is an amazing group of people led by our Vice-President, Eric Geiger and Associate Vice-President, Earl Robertson. Sometimes I wonder just how I got to sit at this table.
One of the special projects we worked on in recent months is developing a “Ministry Essentials” document for each area of work in the churches we serve. I collaborated with our leaders in the Worship area and drew from my own study and experience as a Worship Pastor to build this document for our area of work.
Over the next four blogs, I want to share with you the four values we identified that characterize a healthy worship ministry along with a brief description of each one. At the end of this series, we’ll publish them in one place so they can be shared easily. I hope this discussion will help all of us evaluate the work we are doing in our churches and gain clarity around ways we can develop even healthier ministries that honor the Lord in our churches.
Here is the first value:
Healthy Worship Ministries are Telling the Story.
Colossians 1:15-20; Philippians 2:5-12
The worship experiences of these churches are rich in Biblical content and theological underpinnings. They declare the attributes of God and express praise and adoration in response, but go further with an intentional focus on the Gospel message – they are Christo-centric and tell the good news of the Gospel through the worship responses of the congregation and performing groups.
Remember the conversation Jesus had with the two disciples on the road to Emmaus? One of the sources He used to explain the scriptures about himself was the Psalms – the songs of their worship. And consider the hymns of Paul – Colossians 1:15-20 that describes who Jesus is and Philippians 2:5-12 that explains what Jesus did.
Healthy worship ministries intentionally infuse their singing with the truth of the Gospel.
Stay tuned for the rest!
Mike Harland is the Director of LifeWay Worship. When he’s not directing 30+ employees, you’ll find him leading worship at various churches around the country, writing/arranging worship songs and/or, writing his next book. In his spare time, he loves playing basketball and spending time with his family. Mike can be found on Twitter @MikeHarlandLW and on facebook.com/Mike.Harland.37.