Show God's Word

Featuring Bob Kauflin Posted on May 23, 2010

Scripture can be seen as well as heard. Sometimes we project verses on the screen during an instrumental break of a song or as an introduction to a song. If we plan it in advance, we can have a Scripture projected when the worship leader mentions it. That kind of visual reinforcement can help people better grasp the meaning of a passage being read.

If your church uses bulletins, you can also print relevant Scriptures on the front or inside.

At different times I've included a Scripture passage when sending the worship team the songs we were going to sing the next Sunday. My goal was to give everyone a sense of the theme and to remind them that everything wedo is under the authority of God's Word and is meant to draw attention to his revelation rather than to our creativity or efforts.

Pray God's Word

More than once I've been involved in a meeting where the worship leader paused between two songs and began to pray like this: “Well, Lord, today, we uh, just wanna thank you, Father, for being with us here, Jesus, and fo rbringing us together, Lord, to worship you. You're incredible. We just wanna come into your throne room today, Jesus, and worship you like we've never worshiped you before, Lord, and that's what we're here to give you, Lord, by the Spirit of Jesus, Father, so that you'd be glorified. And, Lord . . .”
I know the worship leader is sincere. I know it because I've sincerely prayed that way many times myself.
But how much more helpful would it be to pray something like this:“Father, thank you that you've invited us to gather as your people to worship you. Thank you for Jesus, our great Savior. Because of his substitutionary sacrifice we're able to be here in your presence, unashamed and forgiven. We pray that your Spirit would open our eyes to see that we're dearly loved in Christ. Sanctify us by your truth, and work in us what is pleasing to you. Be glorified in everything we do this morning, Father.”

Like everything else we do in worshiping God, prayer is an opportunity tobe Word-centered. That doesn't mean we can't use our own expressions or thoughts. It just means they're shaped and informed—both in attitude and content—by what God has revealed to us in Scripture.

Prayers can be written, planned, or spontaneous. It's not a bad thing to use written prayers if that will enable a thoughtful, heartfelt, biblical response to God. I've tried it a few times and have been surprised at how free I am to focus on what I'm praying rather than trying to figure out what to say on the spot. And over the long run it will only make my spontaneous prayers more coherent and substantive.

You can make your public prayers more biblical by praying the Scriptures back to God privately. Psalms usually work the best. Read a verse, then begin praying the thoughts contained in it, applying them to certain situations or people in your life. Psalms 23, 33, 62, 86, 103, and 145 are good places to start. Over time you'll be amazed how your thoughts, attitudes, and words willbe brought more in line with the way God thinks. Your prayers will take on agreater confidence. And your congregation will benefit from your example.

A faithful worship leader combines the Word of God with music to magnify the greatness of God in Jesus Christ. We don't need music to hear God's Word. We don't need music to worship God. But the Bible connects music and worship often enough to persuade us that music might be an important aspect of our relationship with God.

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