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A Worshipful Response PDF Print E-mail
Written by Brian Tabor   
Thursday, November 06, 2008

I have had the honor of leading worship professionally for 15 years. That number amazes me. In many ways I can't believe that I'm old enough to have done anything for 15 years. But, that's the truth. Over those years God has taught me many things and I look forward to all that He has to teach me over the next 15 and beyond.

Something that amazes me is the variety of responses I see in worship services. As we have traveled from congregation to congregation over the last 7 years, we have seen a tremendous variety. We have seen people jump up and run around the sanctuary. We've seen people sit stone-faced in complete silence. We have also seen lots of congregations in the middle of these examples.

This past week, I was starting our service and after greeting our people, I asked this question, "Have you come ready to celebrate the Lord today?" Out of a few hundred people, maybe 10 gave any kind of response. Most just kept silent or busy, preoccupied with whatever had their attention at that moment. As I watched this happen, I began to laugh inside myself, so I followed with this question, "How many of you are ready for a big Colts win tonight?" Nearly every single person in our sanctuary began to clap and cheer.>

Interesting response, huh? This is in no way meant as an indictment on our congregation. You could substitute the name of a local sports team and ask that question in any city in America and probably get a similar response. What is it that makes us so inhibited in worship? Why do we see the opposite response from people who are bowing at the altar of sports?

Are there times when silence is appropriate in worship? Absolutely. There are those moments when we come to a place of worship and a realization of God's awesome power and our feeble words just can't do it justice. It is completely natural to sit in silence, basking in the presence of God during those times.

 

I think we are on thin theological ice when that is our only response.

Scripture is full of exhortations on worship. Take some time and read through Psalms and you will find all kinds of encouraging instruction on the subject of worship. Here are a few:

I will praise you, O Lord, with all my heart; I will tell of all your wonders. I will be glad and rejoice in you; I will sing praise to your name, O Most High. (Psalm 9:1-2, NIV)

I will exalt you, O Lord, for you lifted me out of the depths and did not let my enemies gloat over me. O Lord my God, I called to you for help and you healed me…..Sing to the Lord, you saints of his; praise his holy name. (Psalm 30:1-2, 4, NIV)

I will extol the Lord at all times; his praise will always be on my lips. (Psalm 34:1, NIV)

Clap your hands, all you nations; shout to God with cries of joy. (Psalm 47:1, NIV)

You turned my wailing into dancing; you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy, that my heart may sing to you and not be silent. (Psalm 30:11-12, NIV)

Let them praise his name with dancing and make music to him with tambourine and harp. (Psalm, 149:3, NIV)

Those are just a few and I haven’t even scratched the surface in terms of what the Bible has to say about worship. Are there churches that take expression to an extreme? Absolutely. You can see some crazy stuff on the expressive side that isn’t in the Bible either. 

Here’s my issue. Many people look at the crazy stuff on the expressive side and end up labeling all expression as “not for them.” You might hear people say, “That’s just not my way.” I also hear this one quite a bit, “I worship quietly and to myself.”

Really? Quietly and to yourself? The God of the universe has saved your soul and you worship quietly and to yourself? Should there not be some sign of life when we worship? Some evidence of thanksgiving?

As you can tell by the length of this post, this is something I am very passionate about. I want to leave you with a quote from a friend of mine. He has dedicated his life to the subject of worship. The first time I heard him say this, I was floored:

There are times when silence is irreverent. (Randy Vader)

Stop. Read that again. Take a couple of moments to think about it. More importantly, think about that as you enter your church for worship this weekend.


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Worship Matters - 9.21.08 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Brian Tabor   
Monday, September 22, 2008

We had a great weekend. Kim and I were on the road this past weekend, leading a worship retreat at Shepherd Nazarene in Columbus, OH. We really enjoy leading these retreats. It gives us a chance to spend more time with people from the church. This church brought their whole team together for the retreat: choir, praise teams, band & tech. It was awesome to have them all together.

The retreat started on Friday night and ran all day Saturday. Then, Sunday morning was the celebration of all that we had learned and experienced through the weekend. Having this extra time really allows us to dig into some deeper issues facing the church at worship. Kim did a

KT Teaching In Columbus, OH

KT Teaching In Columbus, OH

great deal of teaching on worship theology, which really made a huge impact. She absolutely knocked it out. She taught a lot about what the Bible has to say about worship, expression in worship and what it means to be a worship leader. We also did a session together on the practical issues that face church worship teams today.

The Sunday worship celebration was awesome. The Shepherd choir & band really did a fantastic job. We were able to do some of our music as well as teach the congregation some new worship songs. It was a very powerful experience and we are grateful for the Lord’s guidance and provision. HE is doing great things at Shepherd. They are blessed with tremendous leadership from Senior Pastor Sam Barber, Worship Leader Amy Fisher and Choir Director Jeff Linker.

We also got to meet some real characters over the weekend. Every church has to have people who keep things fun and interesting. This church has some great ones.

In all, it was an awesome weekend. God moved in a tremendous way and we are blessed and grateful. Our prayer is that what HE began in the hearts of the people will make for lasting transformation in the lives of the worship team. We also made some great new friendships and we look forward to seeing all that God is going to do in the life of this great church!


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TM Concert Update PDF Print E-mail
Written by Brian Tabor   
Monday, August 25, 2008

We had a great day on Sunday and are grateful for your prayers.

The morning concert was electric and you could really sense the presence of the Lord throughout the service. Harvestime is one of my favorite places to lead worship….the people come so hungry and ready to experience God. We actually had several people re-commit their lives to Christ in this service. We also had at least 1 person indicate that they prayed to receive Christ as their Savior for the very first time! We are so grateful for that!

Pastors Mark & Tonya Tabor

As I wrote on Saturday, my brother Mark and his wife Tonya are at the top of my list of hero’s in the faith. They have been a huge inspiration and encouragement to Kim and me. They are top-notch people and excellent pastors. They have both a heart for their people and for the lost. The Lord has used them to build a tremendous congregation in a smaller town and they are really making a difference in the community.

Kim and I have learned so much for Mark and Tonya over the years. Many things we have learned through conversations and times of prayer and spiritual renewal; but, others have been learned by simply watching them pursue the Lord with their whole hearts and lives. We love you guys and are so grateful for the investment that you have made in us! Thank you for the calls, emails, conversations and prayers that you have offered over the years. You guys rock!

We also had a great concert in the evening at Good Shepherd. I am so grateful for the way God is using our new devotional CD: “Finally Free: Stories of Hope & Inspiration.”  We used 2 of those stories yesterday: Sandra & Misty. Both of these stories moved people in such a tremendous way (as do all the ladies stories on the CD). We were able to hear so many people talk about how God used these powerful stories of healing and forgiveness to encourage them and remind them that God is truly in the details of our lives. I am so very thankful for that fact.

In all, it was a great weekend and we are grateful for the ways in which the Lord was at work. We are also grateful for your prayers! Thank you for that important support.

Now it’s time to go unpack and get some sleep so I can be ready for work tomorrow!

 


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Kim & Brian Concert - NYC PDF Print E-mail
Written by Brian Tabor   
Friday, August 08, 2008

 We are here in New York City preparing for our concert at Calvary Baptist Church on W. 57th Street in Manhattan. We are so excited to be here and are praying that the Lord would work in a powerful way in the concert on Sunday night! We hope that you will join us in prayer!

This is truly an amazing city! It is really an experience to walk the streets and listen to all the different languages you can hear and to smell all the wonderful foods cooking in the neighborhood restaurants.

It is also a tremendous reminder of just how many people in the world are in need of a life-transforming experience with Jesus Christ. That is why we’ve come here….to reach out to the people of this city and tell them about the Lord. Will you join us in prayer over that?

The concert will take place this Sunday night, August 10at Calvary Baptist Church, 123 W. 57th Street in Manhattan at 6:00 PM. We are trusting the Lord for a powerful night of ministry and are praying that we will see many lives touched and impacted by the power of the Gospel.

We thank you for your prayerful support and will put a new post up to let you know how the evening goes. 

Thanks again for your support! God is good!

Be Blessed - 

Brian & Kim


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Crazy Love PDF Print E-mail
Written by Brian Tabor   
Tuesday, August 05, 2008

I recently began to read a book that is absolutely rocking my world. Have you ever read something and thought, “Wow, this person totally has taken my heart and written it down?” That is precisely how I feel and I am only half way through the book!

 The book is entitled, “Crazy Love: Overwhelmed By A Relentless God” by Francis Chan. Francis is the Senior Pastor of Cornerstone Church in Simi Valley, CA, a mega church of several thousand people. I had the chance to hear Francis speak last year at a conference I attended. I was impacted by his message and passion for Christ on many levels.

So many times I feel like the church is settling for less than God has for us. That, in a sense, is the message of this amazing book called “Crazy Love.”

The book opens with this question: “Have you ever wondered if we’re missing it?” Francis then goes on to write,

“It’s crazy if you think about it. The God of the universe - the Creator of nitrogen and pine needles, galaxies and E minor  - loves us with a radical, unconditional, self-sacrificing love. And what is our typical response? We go to church, sing songs and try not to cuss. 

Whether you’ve verbalized it or not……we all know something’s wrong.

This book has gripped my heart. Not only does Francis ask some hard-hitting questions but he also lifts up some foundational ideas for us to consider as we face the future as God’s Church. He also spends a great deal of time talking about things like authenticity and a love relationship with Jesus that will transform us and, in turn, the world around us.

I hope that you will make the small investment and pick up a copy of this book. When you do, I pray that it will rock you as it is rocking me. The ripple effects could be far reaching!

 

 


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