A Balance of Tempos

Some worship sets can push a congregation to exhaustion. Today if we had done one more up-tempo song, that's where we all would have been. Some worship sets lull the participants (or listeners) into a catatonic state.

Sunday morning setlists in a Christ-centered worship experience should be all about the words, those centered on the gospel, the God story, the redemptive celebration.

I have found that I must be careful to encapsulate the words in a variety of tempos that enhance the story, not drive a congregation to exhaustion or sleep.

How we did it this week is like this:

Pre-service Music

Sing, Sing, Sing by Chris Tomlin, Daniel Carson, Jesse Reeves, Matt Gilder and Travis Nunn

(a driving up-tempo song that we introduced for the first time today as pre-service.)

Songs

Awesome Is The Lord Most High by Cary Pierce, Chris Tomlin, Jesse Reeves and Jon Abel

(another up-tempo song)

Never Let God by Matt Redman and Beth Redman

(even though the tempo slowed, it still takes a lot of energy from the stage and congregation to make it happen)

*finally a break

Welcome

Songs

Hallelujah What A Savior by public domain recorded by Ascend the Hill

(big change here...if you are not using this old text you are really missing something and the 'hallelujah' chorus gives time to reflect on the Christ-centered words.)

Be Thou My Vision by public domain

(just two stanzas, sung with little instrumental support so that the words could be the focus. We used the "Be Thou My Vision" and "Riches I heed not" stanzas.)

None But Jesus by Brooke Fraser

(picking up the tempo here again, in fact driving this song a little faster than normally. but it worked.)

Sermon

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How do you determine balance of tempo in the services you plan?

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This post is my participation in the blog carnival Sunday Setlists found at The Worship Community.