Worship and the Great Commission

 

The Great Commission, found in Matthew 28:18-20, commands all believers to “Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Song and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe everything I have commanded you.” Another important command in Scripture is often referred to as the Great Commandment, found in Matthew 22:37-40, which says, “’Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the greatest and most important command. The second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’” These two passages are at the heart of evangelism and of worship.

It is easy to keep these two activities of the church separate in our minds, but they actually are not separate elements, or at least they shouldn’t be. One of the books I am reading for my Personal Evangelism class is called Worship and Witness: Becoming a Great Commission Worshiper. Our main goal as followers of Christ is to glorify God. This is done as we live lives of worship individually, and as we come together corporately on Sunday mornings. However, another way we glorify and worship God is to obey His commands and live a life of obedience. Obeying the Great Commission by making disciples brings glory to God. Also, regarding the Great Commandment, the authors of Worship and Witness say, “He called us to glorify God with unyielding allegiance, but our worship isn’t complete unless we also love our neighbor. If we fall in love with Christ and seek to glorify His name, we’ll also love others and lead them to worship with us.” (1)

Coming together on Sunday mornings to express worship together as the Body of Christ is a wonderful and necessary thing. However, our worship cannot stop there. “If the heartbeat of worship is obedience, then it is impossible to be a true worshipper without being directly involved in the command of evangelism” (2) found in the Great Commission. We are called to be Great Commission worshippers. We should love the Lord with all our heart, and love our neighbors enough to tell them about the love of Christ. Great Commission worshipers are those “who are so in love with Jesus, so committed to worship Him, and so devoted to obedience of all His commands that they simply cannot restrain themselves from telling others about Him.” (3) That sounds like a great goal!

1.  David Wheeler and Vernon M. Whaley, Worship and Witness: Becoming a Great Commission Worshiper (Nashville: Lifeway Press, 2012), 12.

2.  David Wheeler and Vernon M. Whaley, The Great Commission to Worship: Biblical Principles for Worship-Based Evangelism (Nashville: B&H Academic, 2011), 13.

3.  Wheeler and Whaley, The Great Commission to Worship, xi.

NWLC ’14 Kansas – Workshop Schedule (Alternate Layout)

On July 13th, I’ll be leading a team of 8 members from our Worship Ministry at Bethel Baptist Church down to Kansas City for the National Worship Leader Conference. We’ve attended this conference for the last several years, and I would highly recommend it! It really is a highlight of my year, and I’m looking forward to another great year in 2014!

There are so many great aspects about this conference – including the inspiring times of worship, the challenging speakers and the practical workshops! For the past several years, I’ve been putting together my own version of the workshop schedule, and handing it out to my team. The NWLC team has done a great job offering an app and online schedule, but this version just lays it out a little differently, making it easy to see at a glance when each workshop is offered throughout the conference. Last year, a few people saw it and asked about it, so I thought I would make it available for anyone else who would like to use it.  Feel free to download my version of the workshop schedule for your use. The information includes the most recent updates on 7/1. Hope you find it helpful, and maybe I’ll see you at the conference!

Click on file below to download workshop chart:
NWLC ’14 (Kansas) – Workshop Chart (Alternate layout)

If you’re going to the conference, be sure to let me know! I’d love to connect with other worship leaders!

Barry Westman
Twitter: @bkwestman
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/barrywestman

NWLC ’12 – Alternate Workshop Schedule and Registration Discount!

In a little less than a week, we’ll be taking a team of 6 people from our worship ministry here at Bethel Baptist Church down to Kansas City for the National Worship Leader Conference. I’ve been to this event for the last several years, and it really is a highlight of my year! I’m looking forward to another great year in 2012!

If you haven’t already registered, you can get a great discount from my friends over at All About Worship! When you register, use the code “AAW15” to get 15% off the registration price!

There are so many great aspects about this conference – including the inspiring times of worship, the challenging speakers and the practical workshops! For the past several years, I’ve been putting together my own version of the workshop schedule, and handing it out to my team. The one that’s included in the conference booklet is great, but this version just lays it out a little differently, making it easy to see at a glance when each workshop is offered throughout the conference. Last year, a few people saw it and asked about it. So, I thought I would make it available for anyone else who would like to use it.  Feel free to download my version of the workshop schedule for your use.

NWLC 12 – Workshop Schedule (Alternate layout) (includes changes sent out by Suzie on 7/10)

If you’re going to the conference, be sure to let me know! I’d love to connect with other worship leaders!

Barry Westman
@bkwestman
http://www.facebook.com/barrywestman

Please pray for Sharon!

As some of you know, my sister Sharon is in the hospital fighting for her life as we speak.  She had her second bone marrow transplant recently, and has developed Graft Versus Host Disease. On top of that, she also now has pneumonia, which is complicating matters. We had the chance to go visit her at the hospital in Minnesota recently, and when we asked her if there was anything we could do for her, she said “Pray!”  Today, when the doctors gave her some pretty dire news about her condition, she responded with “Fight, fight fight!” She isn’t able to say many words, but from those two responses we can get a sense of where she’s at. She has not given up, she is still fighting, and we will continue to pray and plead for God to heal her. She is 49 years old, married and has a 10 year old daughter. I would appreciate your prayers for her in this critical time.

If you’d like to follow updates about her status, you can subscribe to her Caring Bridge site. She is not able to make her own entries right now, but our sister Sandy regularly updates how things are going.  Please spread the word and let’s add to our already huge army of people praying for Sharon!

Sharon and Roberto
Sharon and Jillian

Prayer Warriors! Sharon

After the good news from yesterday, Sharon is in need of your prayers. The successful treatment for GVHD left Sharon very vulnerable for infection, since they had to suppress her Immune system to fight the GVHD. The doctors are now very concerned because they think she has developed pneumonia, with a very weak immune system.

Please pray for God’s healing hand to touch Sharon once again and take away this infection and strengthen her immune system. Her body is so weak, completely spent.

Thank you for your prayers!

“The Servant Worship Leader” article on All About Worship

I recently had the opportunity to write a short devotional for the All About Worship website called “The Servant Worship Leader”. Here’s just a short excerpt…

“Matthew 20:26 says “But among you it will be different. Whoever wants to be a leader among you must be your servant,” and again in Matthew 23:11 He says “But he who is greatest among you shall be your servant.” What does it look like to a worship leader who is a servant? It needs to be lived out in all areas of your ministry, but let’s take a look at just a few – being a servant to your pastor, the team you lead and to your congregation.”

You can go to the All About Worship website to read the full article.

Sunday Recap – May 20, 2012

Contemporary Service

  • “We Are Saved” (Paul Baloche, Ben Fielding, Reuben Morgan)
    • This was a new song we introduced today, from Paul Baloche’s new CD. We’ve done quite a few songs from that album. At first, I actually wasn’t sure if this one would work, since the verses aren’t that easy to sing, in my opinion. Today we did the song as a special at the start of the service, so we’ll see how it works next week when we add the congregation. As I worked on the song, though, throughout the week, I really started to like it! It says what the church should want to say!
  • “Salvation is Here” (Joel Houston)
  • “One Thing Remains” (Christa Black, Brian Johnson, Jeremy Riddle)
    • Week 2 for this song here, and already people seemed to really be connecting with it. Great song!
  • “Promises” (Jared Anderson)
    • A great way to end our service, after a message on God’s grace and the promises of God.

I had a couple firsts today! I recently purchased an iPad for use at church, and today was the first day I put it to use on a Sunday morning. I used the Music Stand app from Planning Center Online today, replacing my book filled with sheet music.  It automatically pulled up the sheet music for each song linked to my plan for today in Planning Center. The only problem I had with it is that it was so small! I messed up a few times because I couldn’t see the words and chords. But, overall, it worked great!

Today was also the first day that we used You Version Live!  I’ve been playing around with it this week, trying to figure out how to use it on a Sunday morning.  More and more people are using their phone or tablet during the message, so this program really adds a lot to their experience! I just tried it as a test run with a couple people besides me. I set up the program Saturday night, based off of Pastor Tim’s message transcript, including all the Scripture references, main points, and even a poll question.  It was so slick! As PT gave his message, we could just follow along and all of those elements were right there. You could also take notes, and since it’s linked to your account, you can go online to see them anytime, or email them to yourself.

You can see the video and Planning Center details for this service.

Zack on the electric, with Elias on drums
Bekah, Brenda and Rick on vocals, with Dennis on Bass
Barry on keys with Zack on electric
The whole team!

Cafe Connection Service

 I had the chance to lead in the Cafe this morning, along with a great team of people! It was bittersweet though, because Bruce and Georgine, a couple who has served on the worship ministry for many years, are moving away, and this was their last week on the team. You can see the Planning Center details for this service.
Georgine on her last day in the Cafe, with Denise
Bruce on his last day on Easy Worship, and Curt on sound
The Cafe Service singing “Never Once”
Aaron on guitar in the Cafe

Traditional Service

  • Praise Him! Praise Him!
  • My Hope is in the Lord
  • And Can It Be?
  • O Love That Will Not Let Me Go
  • Standing On the Promises
Since I was leading in the Cafe, Rick led the Traditional Service this morning, along with another great team! It was so nice to have Dee back on the piano!  You can watch the video of this service and see the Planning Center details.
Rick leading worship
Paul and Annette, husband and wife, singing a duet
Dee on piano

This post is part of the Sunday Setlists blog at The Worship Community, where worship leaders share recaps and setlists from today. This is a special week at TWC, as they celebrate the 200th consecutive week of Sunday Setlists!  As a special way to celebrate, they asked us to include pictures of today’s services. Hopefully you enjoy seeing pics from each our services above. Hope you all had a great Sunday!