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Planning Blended Worship: 4 out of 4 stars
Robert Webber

Paperback: 209 pages
Publisher: Abingdon Press (October 1998)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0687032237
ISBN-13: 978-0687032235

Robert Weber was an amazing man of God who passed away recently. I first read some of his work on worship about 9 years ago and it blew me away. This book is a compendium to his other books about blended worship. The difference is in this one instead of just teaching what blended worship is it goes into how to actually lay out a service.
Within the my church and the Charasmatic Episcopal Church this is an invaluable resource. If we took a poll of what blended worship is on here we would hear it is: mixing hymns with modern worship…so Wesley and Tomlin. While that is accurate it is only mostly accurate (that was almost a princess bride quote). Where you have to first begin with is…worship is more than the music. It is the entire service. It is our prayers, the word, any creeds, the music, and most important Communion. This is the true center of a “blended” worship service.
Webber lays this all out and gives examples of the order of the service and how best to do things. It is basically a skeleton and  he makes that pretty clear. With it being a book 1998 so of the modern songs are not so modern, but thats not really an issue because  you can use whatever is most relevant to your church.

All in all if you are a worship leader who is currently doing blended worship, looking to do blended worship, or even just interested in how it works…pick this one up and well the rest of his also.

The Barbarian Way: 2 out of 4 stars
Erwin Raphael Mcmanus

Hardcover: 160 pages
Publisher: Thomas Nelson (February 10, 2005)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0785264329
ISBN-13: 978-0785264323

I was pretty excited about reading this book. After hearing and reading great reviews of it and Mcmanus being on the cusp of the “emerging” church I thought this would be a good one.

Sadly I wasn’t very impressed with it. I like the concept, but i think the title is a big issue. He calls for us to go back to our barbarian form of Christianity. The only problem with that is the def of a barbarian is:

bar·bar·i·an [bahr-bair-ee-uhn] Pronunciation KeyShow IPA Pronunciation –noun

1. a person in a savage, primitive state; uncivilized person.
2. a person without culture, refinement, or education; philistine.
3. (loosely) a foreigner.
4. (in ancient and medieval periods)

a. a non-Greek.
b. a person living outside, esp. north of, the Roman Empire.
c. a person not living in a Christian country or within a Christian civilization.
5. (among Italians during the Renaissance) a person of non-Italian origin.

–adjective

6. uncivilized; crude; savage.
7. foreign; alien.

I don’t think this is exactly what he was going for. I think we do need to be a people much like the original church fathers and like John the baptist. Not necessarily barbarians, but more so zealous for Christ and zealous for the furthering of His kingdom.

There are some great points in this book. The closer we are to Christ the harder the sacrifice.

The big issue is while there are great points if you took out the unneeded repetition you are left with a 40 page book.

I do recommend this book because the points he does make I think are dead on about starting a new fire in the church with creativity and openness and zealousness. Just keep in mind that you may find yourself jumping over sections.

God Songs: book review

July 16, 2007 — 5 Comments

God Songs: 4 out of 4 stars
Paul Baloche, Jimmy & Carol Owens

Length: 304 pages
Size: 6 1/2 x 9 inches
Format: Softcover
Available Date: November 2004
Published By: Lead Worship
ISBN: 1-933150-033AC

I am a huge fan of Paul Baloche. You can almost say that I seek to be just like him. His heart for worship is unparalleled and his song writing is fantastic. So when I found out he had a book available with Jimmy and Carol Owens (pioneers of Christian music and writers of antshillvania) I had to buy it.

What I got was a manual for not just worship writing but for songwwriting in general. It is full of information to help take a writers songs to a whole new level and goes through every process involved. From prayer and personal worship to thoughts, ideas and inspiration to words, rhyme, and structure to music, theory, and creativity.

I was blown away by how much they cover in this book and it has taught me to think differently about my songwriting.

This is a must read for any body in worship or writing worship.

Our new website and blog went up yesterday. A few pages are being updated, but let me know what you guys think.

St. Michael’s website

St. Michael’s blog

St. Michael’s Virb

An ad I designed for our church is causing quite a discussion. What are your thoughts on this ad?

see it here http://www.churchmarketingsucks.com/archives/2007/05/church_marketin_33.html

and here  http://www.flickr.com/photos/roodgraphics/489959914/