Who is like you, O Lord, among the gods? Who is like you, majestic in holiness, awesome in glorious deeds, doing wonders? – Exodus 15:11
The Lord is high above all nations, and his glory above the heavens! Who is like the Lord our God, who is seated on high, who looks far down on the heavens and the earth? – Psalm 113:4-6
We believe that the appropriate response to these questions is a resounding “No one!” and “Nothing!”
Therefore, we believe that God’s glory must be honoured, his holiness revered, his greatness admired, his power praised, his truth sought, his wisdom esteemed, his beauty treasured, his goodness savoured, his faithfulness trusted, his commandments obeyed, his justice respected, his wrath feared, his grace cherished, his presence prized, his might declared, his splendour adored, his judgments accepted, his sovereignty acknowledged, and his person loved. Truly, there is none like him (Exodus 9:14; 1 Samuel 2:2, 7:22; 1 Chronicles 17:20; 2 Chronicles 14:11; Psalm 86:6; Jeremiah 10:6-7).
What is Worship?
But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshippers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him. God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth. – John 4:23-24
Often, worship of God is reduced to outward activity or inward emotion. We can believe we have worshipped God because we went to a certain place and engaged in certain activities. We can also believe we have worshipped God because we felt a certain way. While worship certainly involves our bodies and our emotions, it is more than this. True worship, according to Jesus’ teaching, is an act of bowing, of bending, of prostrating before God in humility and submission. This is an act that takes place in our spirit as we worship God who is spirit. This posture of constant worship is one that only Jesus can form in us so that our worship is acceptable to God.
As a congregation we pray that our Triune God would multiply love and praise in our hearts, bodies, minds and souls in deepening relationship with Him. (Scripture references)
Worship Mission: Our Liturgy
With thoughtful preparation, and in obedience to the Word of God, our desire is to lead our gathered church family to worship God through public reading of Scripture, preaching and teaching, baptism and communion, singing and music, prayer, offerings, testimony, fellowship, and service; equipping the church to worship in all of life.
The Worship Service
Our worship service is a time and place where God’s people gather to worship in spirit and truth. Our pastoral team, service leaders, and musicians work together, trusting God and each other to lead our congregation to honour our Lord. While we fall short of perfection, we rely on God’s grace to pursue excellence in the following goals:
- Variety in the service order structure from week to week
- Balance and blend of musical styles and tastes
- Appropriate flow from song to song, with attention given to transitions
- Elimination of distractions, i.e. unnecessary movement of musicians, misspelled words, sound quality
- Provision of space for silence and reflection
- Incorporation of the arts
We also give careful attention to the language used in the public gatherings of our congregation. The way we use language we use in our gathered worship affects the way language we use in the rest of our life, and vice versa. We aim for our corporate worship to be:
Formative, expressive, stretching and relational
- Full of faithful speech – God’s language school for us are the Scriptures, especially the Psalms
- Reminding us of God’s words of comfort and challenge
- Thankful for the gift of the gospel, the blessing of fellowship, and the hope we find in God alone
- A balance of adoration, confession, thanksgiving, supplication, exaltation, and proclamation
What is Effective Worship in Song?
Let everything that has breath praise the LORD! Praise the LORD! – Psalm 150:6
Ultimately, the measure of effective worship in song is measured by how well the congregation sings. Our musicians and song leaders seek to facilitate an intellectually and emotionally engaged communal experience where members sing to one another while singing to God (Colossians 3:16). Worship in song aims at God’s glory and the good of the body. God is worthy of such worship, and God’s people need to hear the faith-reinforcing praises, laments, and pleas of their fellow saints.
We’re listening for the instruments that suit our preference or the style that suits our preference. We’re listening for the folksy and hearty voices of other pilgrims walking alongside us. This means singing with gusto (1 Chronicles 13:8) as a genuine spiritual expression of love, thanksgiving, and praise. What matters most is that our singing be directed to God and each other. We glorify God by singing together because God in Christ has brought us together.