This morning for class, the Worship class and the College class combined to watch a video featuring Jeff Walling and his son Taylor. The lesson was titled “Can Two Generations Worship Together?”. Unfortunately, it was sort of a bad time to choose that weekend as the time to watch it with the College class as most of the College group was still gone. If I were Todd, I would see about getting it from Anthony and showing it on a Sunday night. Its was just a little over 45 minutes long, but by no means boring.
They start out by describing two worship services that they both went to… I bet I don’t even have to describe it to you. You can probably already imagine the two services that were described. And yes, one would describe one of the services as boring and the other would describe the other service as just loud. At Laurel, I would hardly say our worship could be described as loud and over-the-top. After some talk about conflicts going on in our Churches (or should that be a little c?), they presented four ways in which churches are dealing with it.
The first was segregation. We, to an extent, do this at Laurel. For example, Children’s Worship for 2 year olds – K and now the new Bible Basics for 1st-3rd graders. What we are saying is that they are too young to get much out of what is going on in Big People’s Church so we send them out. Well some churches have said that this should apply to the teenagers and college students who want to worship in a more contemporary fashion. We don’t exactly do this with what we call Early Service and Late Service, but its borderline.
I don’t remember what the bullet for the second item was, but its pretty easy to describe. It was a worship style that reflects the worship style of the shepherds. The worship is going to be like what those in power prefer. I wouldn’t say that this is what we have at Laurel simply for the reason that form what I’ve picked up, they Elders collectively don’t prefer one style. Each individual may have a preference and for some those preferences may be similar, but they are certainly areas where they don’t all agree on.
The third style was the Blended Worship approach (also called the M-M style). This is what we try to do at Laurel. Currently we have been sticking with about 60% hymns and 40% praise. Now your probably thinking to yourself: “Besides Copyright Year, what is the difference between a praise song and a hymn?” To which I would like to respond, “Do you think God cares?”
The fourth style was called Separate. This is probably the worst of the four ways. A healthy way of doing Separate is to do a church plant. This would be starting a church in an area that a church is really needed. However, this being the south and in the Bible Belt, they are very few areas that are like that… But if we are going to take this to heart and apply it to our situation in Knoxville, Knoxville does seem to have the problem of not enough churches. A less healthy way of doing Separate is to do just that. Start a new church just because you didn’t get along with the old church. This happened a couple of times to the Church I went to when I was in High School. For some of y’all its gonna be hard to really relate to what it does to a community because you’ve never lived in a small town.
The four styles were all Jeff take on things. Taylor had a much simpler take on it. Head and Heart. The older generations wants a service where they feel something is learned. They want to use there heads. The younger generations want to experience a more heartfelt worship.
OK, this post is getting somewhat long and if I go into Post-Modernism, it could get really long. So I’ll just stop here and leave you with the meaning of M-M. It is mutually miserable. I think that’s apt.