I’m somewhat of a nonconformist by nature. If everyone is going one way, I’ll often try another path. So when call and response music became trendy in the modern worship scene recently (thanks to Andrew Peterson’s megahit “Is He Worthy”), you’d think I would stick to my nonconformist ways and avoid the trend.
But against the grain of my personality, I have embraced this trend whole-heartedly. (I hate referring to anything so sacred as worship as a trend, but music follows culture; culture is led by trends.). “Is He Worthy” has become a game changer in how people respond in worship services. Call and response has been a wonderful staple in liturgical services for centuries, often through spoken prayers and verbal responses. The actual definition of liturgy is literally “of the people.” I love that modern worship has rediscovered this element – in a new way, of course. Call and response music engages the congregation, and it compels them to participate. It shifts worship from an observation sport to a participation sport, where (hopefully) their minds and hearts become focused.
What a big God we worship – a God who encourages us to sing new songs, while not forgetting the ancient landmarks that our faith ancestors have planted for us!
Thanks Be to God (upcoming this fall)
Confession (watch for this new release)