Getting Past Doing It The Same

Praise Him with the trumpet blast, Praise Him with the lyre,

Praise Him with the tambourine and dance

Praise Him with flute and strings

Praise Him with resounding cymbals;

Praise Him with clashing cymbals.

Let everything that breathes praise the Lord.

Psalm 150:3-6

Did you read through the list? Trumpets, strings, cymbals....

Do we get comfortable using the same instrumentation each week? Do we do so because it is easy or good enough?

Granted every church has its own unique musical style. Not everyone uses guitars, nor does everyone use a pipe organ, but it is easy for any church or worship planning team to settle into a routine?

I do...

Advance planning helps.

Thinking about the musicians God has given us helps.

Remembering our people have musical taste beyond mine helps.

Realizing that I am to invest and nurture the people with the gifts helps.

Researching what talents are present in my congregation, definitely helps.

Being willing to step out of the comfort zone is rewarding.

This week we jumped out of the comfort zone, we added a 'big band' to worship. For the last year developing such a band has been the dream of one of our team leaders so we gave him empowerment to get it started and WOW.... The group ended up with full sections of trumpets, trombones, saxes and rhythm. When they started practicing it wasn't great...but now...WOW.

Here's what we learned:

  • If someone has an idea for ministry...listen.
  • If the leader is committed to the idea...empower.
  • To get the idea off the ground...support.
  • When the group rehearses...encourage.
  • When they are ready to lead...let them.

Today in our services the 'big band' played some first-class big band jazz arrangements of two classic hymns. For us that wasn't enough we wanted to use them to move out of our instrumentation comfort zone. So we found instrumentation/arrangements of some of the songs we used in worship and invited them to help lead. It was refreshing to add these sounds to our regular instrumentation. This approach even gave great energy to the congregation songs.

Below is a list of the congregation songs we used and if you would like more information about the arrangements or info on the 'big band' charts just comment below. I posted videos to all the songs in my Friday post titled: Worship, are you prepared? (This post is a series I post for my congregation called Preparing for Worship. In each of these post I give some insights into what will happen during the weekend's worship services.)

Come Praise and Glorify

To God Be the Glory (Tommy Walker arr.)

Shout to the Lord

When I Speak Your Name

From the Inside Out.

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This post is my contribution to the blog carnival Sunday Setlists which can be found at the Worship Community.