January 19, 2013 | Get free updates of new posts here
Paul Baloche is a favourite worship leader at many churches in Canada and around the world. This spring Paul will be bringing his Leadworship workshop to Canada with events in Moncton, NB and Oakville, ON. Paul Baloche will be bringing his whole team for the Leadworship workshops in both Moncton & Oakville and bringing your whole team would be a great idea.
The workshop will feature a worship concert with Paul Baloche and his band on the Friday night and then a series of large group sessions and small group breakouts on the Saturday.
Here’s how the workshop is described on Paul’s website:
All of the general sessions and workshops are designed to:
• Encourage and equip your entire worship team
• Deepen the spiritual life of each team member
• Be interactive, up-close and personal with each presenter
• Increase your passion for leading others in your local church
Click for more details on each of these workshops including registration info and event schedules:
January 8, 2013 | Get free updates of new posts here
The new Chris Tomlin CD Burning Lights was released today (or last night, if you pre-ordered!) and I’ve had the chance to listen through a couple of times. You’ll find some songs that you’ve heard before on Passion albums, some new songs that you may have heard at Passion this year, a re-working of a classic hymn and more.
Although this isn’t a full review, this album is classic Chris Tomlin. Every worship leader should own this album and consider some of these songs for their church. Chris and his co-writers have given the church another gift of Christ-focused, God-exalting songs which give us the opportunity to express our praise and adoration to God.
January 7, 2013 | Get free updates of new posts here
I’m continuing to look back at 2012 in a few areas – my blog, my life and now my church. Earlier this year I posted what I thought were the best new worship songs of 2012 (1|2|3) but I also wanted to share with you the top worship songs from our church in 2012.
Thanks to the magic of Planning Center Online, figuring out the top worship songs from our church in 2012 is pretty easy. I just ran a quick report, imported to Numbers and looked at how often we had done these songs. And here are the results.
Matt Redman – 10,000 Reasons
This is hands down, without question the most impactful song we sang this year at Compass. Great lyrics, great melody, very easy for people to learn even the first time they hear it. In all, we sang this song on ELEVEN Sundays at our church.
Hillsong – God Is Able Ephesians 3:20-21 has been a bit of an unofficial theme verse for me in my leading this year and “God Is Able” captures that idea perfectly. Another great congregational song from Hillsong.
Brenton Brown – Everlasting God I don’t know how long this song will stay around but it’s safe to say it is a classic. We have gone through seasons where this was a meaningful, profound song for our church and seasons where we have put it on the shelf. This year it gave words to our church in a powerful way.
Chris Tomlin – All To Us This song expresses so clearly our desire for what we want Compass to be all about. “Let the glory of Your name be the passion of the church!”
Paul Baloche – Hosanna Paul continues to write great songs for the church. I am so thankful for him. This continues to be one of the best call to worship songs we have.
Vertical Church – Open Up The Heavens Another new song we introduced this year. If you have not bought the Vertical Church album from Harvest Bible Chapel or read the book by the same name from James MacDonald, you need to do that in 2013.
Paul Baloche – Our God Saves I love how this song ties in the reason for our gathering with the exaltation of God. We gather in the name of the Father so that He would get glory because of what He has done.
January 4, 2013 | Get free updates of new posts here
2012 was a pretty significant year for me and I wanted to take the opportunity to recap it here – partly for myself, partly for you – as a way to give glory and honour to God for what He has done.
Looking back can be a good thing. Remembering what God has done does two things. First, it reminds us that God has been active and alive in our life and has not abandoned us. Second, it strengthens our faith for the future and what He has ahead of us.
So in the spirit of that, let me share with you some of the great things 2012 brought me.
2012 marked the beginning of my 10th year of marriage to Sonya and we’ll celebrate that big anniversary in May 2013. Marriage is not always easy or what I imagined it to be but I wouldn’t trade it for the world. Sonya is a great gift in my life and this has been a year that we will remember for a long time.
Our four kids continue to be incredible fountains of energy. Our three girls are now in school which means that my son & I have been able to enjoy “Manday Monday” on my days off. A real privilege to spend time with him and teach him things that every man needs to know.
Much of my year centred around a 3-month sabbatical which the elders of our church offered to me. A few years ago they instituted a sabbatical policy for our ministry staff, giving us the opportunity to request sabbatical every 7 years. The time away was an incredible gift, reminding me of the good things God gives, reminding me that I love my church and my job and reminding me that nothing I enjoy in this world compares to God Himself. He really is supreme above all things.
As part of sabbatical I spent time away on my own, time away with my wife, time away with each of my kids and time away as a family. We also spent 13 weeks away from our church, our home group, our staff team and our leadership roles. God opened my eyes and my ears while renewing my passion for the church and conviction that she really is the hope of the world.
One of the incredible blessings I got to enjoy as part of sabbatical was a private retreat on this beautiful property. I spent hours walking up and down this carriage path lined with maple trees. The opportunity to do this is something I will remember for a long time.
I’m so thankful I had the privilege of marking seven years on staff at my church this fall. We knew when we came to Orangeville that we were looking to be in one place for a long time and God has honoured that desire. In many ways it feels like we’re just getting started but when the church where you serve is 151 years old, 7 years isn’t much!
As an expression of our commitment to demonstrating and declaring the gospel to as many people in our region as we possibly can, our church agreed this year to change our name from Orangeville Baptist Church to Compass Community Church. This is an exciting change which allows us to move forward on some things God has been stirring in the hearts of our elders and staff for a while.
At some point I’ll write more about the whole name change process and how we led our congregation through that but as of January 2013 we are officially operating as Compass. This is a great change that our church is engaged in and we continue moving forward in the things that God has called us to.
What about you? What were some of the significant things in your life in 2012?
January 3, 2013 | Get free updates of new posts here
Another year, another look back at what’s happened here at the blog. Thanks to those of you who have been along for the journey! Thanks to WordPress stats and Google Analytics for helping me put this together.
For starters, I still believe in the power and place of blogging. I know lots of blogs have come and gone but this really has become my home base on the web and I’ve loved posting and sharing here as a way to encourage and help worship leaders do what they do and do it better.
I do have some things I’d like to see happen here in 2013:
Write and release three ebooks
More blog series of posts
It’s been a great year. Looking forward to all that is ahead in 2013!
December 31, 2012 | Get free updates of new posts here
New year’s resolutions can be fools’ good, promising things you know they can never deliver, but the start of a new year also gives worship leaders a chance to commit to new or continued patterns of behaviour to help us as we lead our congregations in worship.
We can commit to all kinds of things – some frivolous, some meaningful, some life-changing – but here are three new year’s resolutions that will bring guaranteed results to the life of every worship leader and the churches they lead.
Resolve to read
I’ve written before about my commitment to reading and I definitely hold to the “leaders are readers” mantra. Reading opens new possibilities, wires our brains in new ways, allows us to think critically about established patterns of behaviour in our lives. If you read, resolve to continue that and read more in 2013. If you don’t normally read, resolve to read a few books this year. Check out my list of books that I think every worship leader should be reading.
Resolve to connect
Ministry is hard and it’s harder when you try to do it on your own. I’ve committed over the past few years to commit with other worship leaders across Canada (listen to the WorshipRises EP and hear some fruit that’s come out of these relationships) and around the world. Twitter is great for that but nothing beats sitting down with someone over a meal and just talking about life. Resolve to do this at least a few times a month – reach out to some people who are in the trenches with you and get plans for lunch on the calendar.
Resolve to pray
You cannot do this in your own strength. You can’t. Thinking you can is prideful, deceitful, dishonest and just plain wrong. You can’t. You need God. You need His strength, His mercy, His word, everything. You need Him. Resolve to pray more in 2013, pray more passionately, pray more expectantly. Pray for your pastor, pray for the people on your teams, pray for your congregation, pray that the Spirit of God would move mightily in your church and community in 2013.
Have you got some things you’re committing to in 2013? Anything you’re resolving to see happen in your life?
December 4, 2012 | Get free updates of new posts here
Sunday| is an incredible free resource for worship leaders, tech directors, creatives and really anyone trying to make sense of what’s happening with arts in the church. I was honoured to be asked to write another article for the most recent issue on the gentle topic of how to avoid worship band breakups. I’m so thankful to the Lord for the committed, passionate family of musicians and singers we have at Compass so while I may not have a wealth of experience when it comes to how to handle a breakup, here are some things we’ve committed ourselves to in hopes that the breakups never come.
I think there is a role for worship leaders AND worship team members when it comes to maintaining unity, vision and purpose so I’ve included some thoughts for you whether you are leading a team or a member of a team.
What about you? Ever gone through a worship band breakup? Have you got some things that you do with your church worship team to hopefully avoid a band breakup situation?
December 2, 2012 | Get free updates of new posts here
This morning we told our church family that our official launch as Compass Community Church will happen on Sunday, January 6. Working towards name change at a 151-year old church has been an incredible process and at some point I may write about all of the steps along the way but we’re excited about our launch as Compass and reinforcing our core directions of upward and outward.
Our launch will be full of incredible stuff for our church AND our community. Here are a few things we’re doing:
We’ll gather everyone from our church family together between both services on January 6 for our official Compass launch. We’ll pray, thank God again for what He’s done and is doing in our church and our region and commission our congregation to carry out the work God has for us.
Each Sunday in January we’re giving stuff away to our congregation – things with the Compass name/logo that people will use often in the community. We’re hoping that these will open conversations about “What is Compass?” and lead to invitations to our church.
At the end of January we’re hosting a Compass Winter Carnival – a great family event for our community where we’ll have indoor & outdoor events, multiple stages, food trucks, ice sculpting, an outdoor rink and tons of activities. Lots of people in our community have never been on our property and we’re hoping to change that with our Winter Carnival.
This really is only the beginning. Changing our name to Compass allows us to solidify some things which have always been very important to us and positions our church for a very exciting future, allowing us to do things which our previous name didn’t allow.
The future is bright. We’re so thankful for where God is leading us and that our congregation is excited and on board. The vision, faith and grace displayed in this whole process has been inspiring. We are praying that the fruit of all of our work and all of this change is that more people would come to know Christ, that God’s Kingdom would come in greater ways all across our region and that we would be part of a revolution of churches who are upward-focused and outward-released. We’re praying God would allow us to be a part of this.
November 28, 2012 | Get free updates of new posts here
I make no secret about the fact that I am a big big big fan of Paul Baloche so when I saw this Christmas Worship Experience that he put together with LifeWay Worship called Shout For Joy! I was pretty excited. Paul is an incredible worship leader and songwriter but I think my favourite thing about him is the evidence that his heart is so focused on the church. He wants worship leaders like me and like you to succeed in leading our congregations and he comes at his songwriting and his worship leader mentorship from that angle.
Shout for Joy! is a 6-song set that Paul has put together and from what I hear it can be used on a Sunday morning or even as a Christmas Eve service. I know many of you are looking for Christmas Eve service ideas right now so I’d encourage you to check out Shout for Joy!
Each song in the bundle comes with a rehearsal demo track, piano accompaniment, lead sheet, vocal chart, chord chart, rhythm chart and bass guitar part. A powerpoint file containing lyrics of each song and narrations by Paul is included as well.