Worship at Restoration City Church
Updated: Jun 13, 2018
Learn what worship is like at RCC.
Over the past few years, I’ve been approached by different people who've asked me why the RCC Worship Team does things in the particular way that we do. I’d like to take the time to discuss the reasons behind our song choice, style, and order of service. But first I think I should explain exactly what the goal of the RCC Worship Team is.
The Worship Team’s role at RCC is to lead the congregation while discipling others in bringing glory and praise to God by combining the Word of God with music.
We work to proclaim the excellencies of God in Jesus Christ by the power of the Holy Spirit; we contextualize the Gospel with doctrinally sound, passionate, raw, worshipful music. There are many ways in which we do this, and I will explain some of them later on, but I would like you to bear this in mind as you read.
Let’s start with the members of the band. Our band is made up of people who love the lord, and are passionate about worship. The musicians in our band all vary in experience and have different backgrounds in music. Some members are playing in a band for the first time, some are new to playing in a church setting, and some of us have been playing “church music” for a while. As a band we focus on Jesus, worshiping him, and being lead worshipers—what we do with our instruments and voices come second to that. Worship isn’t a time for us to showcase our gifts but rather an opportunity to serve the church.
The next subject that I want to hit on is the style of the music. We play a variety of different worship music ranging from old hymns to songs you might hear on the radio. With our unique group of band members, we have developed our own sound which could be classified as a “rock band". The music at RCC can sometimes be pretty loud (This is something I have heard a lot). We have done pretty much all we can to maintain the volume, but when you have a rock band in a little room there is only so much that can be done.
We are also worshiping with you, not preforming, so sometimes we get really into a song and can’t help but be louder while we worship. Our worship service is not a concert, but it is live music which at times can be unpredictable. The music isn’t always pristine or perfect, but we always strive to play to the best of our abilities and to above all glorify God. After all, that is what we are doing this for . . . not to celebrate the talents that we have been given, but to worship and glorify the giver of the talents.
Song selection— this is a big one and I get asked about it a lot. I tend to be quite picky when it comes to the songs we sing at RCC. I always try my best to let theology drive my decision making. The first thing I do when I am approached with or discover a new song is evaluate the song for theological soundness, biblical coherence, and doctrinal clarity. If a song does not align with these prerequisites, we will not sing it. If people choose not to sing during our time of worship, I at least want the words they read and hear to be beneficial to them spiritually. That is the first and most important part of the song selection at RCC.
Next I want to choose songs that lend themselves more to congregational singing rather than band performance. What this means is I’m looking at picking songs that are in keys that are easier for a group of people to sing along with—and this goes along with pacing as well. When we introduce new songs it is probably the first time the people in the congregation have heard them. I want them to be able to follow along with the songs and hear and understand what they are singing. Musically, I want the songs to sound good but I also don't want them to distract from the meaning of the song. I try to make the instrumentation tasteful and appropriate for the song.
With all those factors considered, there are some really good songs that I like but choose not to introduce into corporate worship because they are lacking in one of those areas: biblical accuracy, appropriate key, or pacing. On the same hand, there are songs that I don’t like but we sing them anyway because they meet my prerequisites: theological soundness, biblical coherence, and doctrinal clarity.
There are two things that we do every Sunday at RCC that do not involve music directly but do involve God and Jesus. One thing that we do is the Call to Worship. The Call to Worship is scripture that is read during or in-between songs to put our focus on the gospel and provoke worship. Scripture has always and will continue to play a big role in our worship service. While we read this scripture, the hope and aim is that it would invoke feelings that will be inspired by the infallible word of God. The other thing that does not involve music is our time of prayer that we do from stage. When pray from the stage we are not using this as a filler or a way to introduce a song. We are trying to be as genuine as possible during this time. That means when we are praying, the prayers are not necessarily going to be huge and beautiful. They may be short or quick, but they are well intended and from the heart of someone who loves Jesus.
With all that being said, you need Jesus and so do I. After all, that is why we are all there on Sunday morning. At the end of the day, our song choice, style, aesthetics, worship order, use of scripture, prayer, and everything else should make it clear that the God-given grace to sinners through Jesus is your reason for being.