So I recently have stumbled upon some very interesting blogs from worship leaders all over the country. And I have to say, I'm loving reading them. Hearing of the struggles, stresses, pleasures, and celebrations that come with being a worship leader is so encouraging. Starting this week I'm going to blog weekly about our services at Westwood.
So.. This blog is part of the “Sunday Setlists” blog carnival hosted at FredMcKinnon.Com. You can check it out here: http://www.fredmckinnon.com/myblog/2008/10/19/sunday-setlists-13
For any who don't know, I'm the minister of music and worship arts at Westwood Baptist in Birmingham (Forestdale), AL. I call our Sunday morning worship blended, which simply means that, in terms of style, we try to balance fairly evenly between traditional hymns and contemporary choruses. We have a bunch of talented musicians at Westwood so we strive to give them all an opportunity to serve. We have a full rhythm & winds sections but no strings. We utilize a praise team and a praise and worship choir.
Here's how this past Sunday went...
Orchestral call to worship - Praise To The Lord The Almighty (Hymn arrangement)
Announcements - I get the pleasure(?) of doing the announcements every Sunday. Am I the only worship leader that has to handle this part of the service? I typically share about some events going on at the church that week that are already written about in the worship guide. But as everyone knows, no one hears about anything unless you say it from the stage. I'm not sure they listen then. But I digress. I try to keep the announcements interesting, but it's not always easy.
* Rise Up & Praise Him (Baloche)
* Praise To The Lord The Almighty (Joachim Neander, 1680)
3 verses with key change for last verse. Talk about traditional. Great hymn with great lyrics "Let the "amen" sound from his people again".
Welcome / Fellowship: Bro. Steve - This is the welcome from our pastor, he normally shares a passage of scripture, possibly an additional announcement, a prayer request, and will lead in prayer. He always closes by leading into a typical baptist "hug and handshake" fellowship time.
*Blessed Be Your Name (Matt Redman)
We omitted the bridge on this one, simply because I'm not a fan of the "You give and take away portion. While it is a biblical truth about God's blessings. I don't see a point in the blatant musical U2 ripoff.
*I Give You My Heart (Reuben Morgan)
Offertory Prayer (always led by one of the deacons)
Choir: At Your Feet (Vicki Yoh'e, arrangement from the musical "Sanctuary")
Message: Bro. Steve “Healing The Heart: Leah & Rachael” (Gen 29:15-35)
Theme: Overcoming rejection; being accepted by God
Invitation: The Savior Is Waiting (Traditional Hymn Arrangement)
Closing Chorus: Rise Up & Praise Him