Picking Worship Songs 101

Here are some great thoughts about picking the songs we sing via EXCHANGED LIVING.


So you’re a worship leader/designer/planner and you have just picked up the latest album fromCool Guy Worship Collective and are wondering to yourself, “Self- which of these songs, if any of them, are worth doing at our next worship gathering?”

Great Question. No, seriously. You need to ask that question every time you hear an album or song. Why? Because not every song you hear should be lead in your church. And that’s not just because of time restraints; there are actually some songs that are better for your church than others.

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Picking worship songs for your church or worship gathering is an important task. In a previous post, I argued that we need to start to think about how we choose songs with a long-term vision of what happens when we gather together. The things we sing shape how we view God and what it means to live as the people of God. Our song choices need to function more like a grammar for the faith and less like sacred karaoke; choosing better songs will hopefully lead to a people who are better shaped by and better proclaim the good news of Jesus Christ.

So how do we pick better songs? Or how do we know if a new song is worth singing together? Today, I want to offer one of the questions I use to filter out what is better from what may not be: Who is doing what in this song? I know- what horrible phrasing and what an awkward question, right? Well, this is how I start to think about something grammatical people callagency. When studying the grammar of a sentence, the agent is the initiator of the action of the phrase or sentence. Agency is about who is doing what is being done in a text. Where there are verbs, there is agency, for every doing is linked to a do-er.

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